Author(s): Tuninger E, Levander S
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Abstract BACKGROUND: Stability of neuroleptic medication has been associated with optimal clinical effect and minimal side-effects. Depot administration is assumed to yield better stability. METHOD: Thirty patients on depot neuroleptic treatment were followed during three years with repeated measurements of plasma level and concurrent ratings of clinical symptoms and side-effects. RESULTS: Of 120 blood samples 35 (29\%) measurements were outside +/-2 s.d. measurement error (expected 5\%). Perphenazine levels were more variable (46\%) than haloperidol (25\%) and flupenthixol (12.5\%). No relationship was found between side-effect ratings and fluctuations of plasma levels. CONCLUSION: Depot neuroleptic medication does not eliminate a clinically unwanted and sometimes marked variation in plasma level.
This article was published in Br J Psychiatry
and referenced in Journal of Patient Care