Author(s): Kane JM
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Abstract Schizophrenia is a complex disorder characterized by a broad spectrum of psychopathology. Aggressive efforts to bring the patient into remission should begin immediately after the first episode. Consequences of non-remission include poor prognosis, psychiatric and general medical complications, treatment resistance, and death from medical comorbidities and suicide. Prevention of relapse following remission is critical to the well-being and optimal functioning of patients with schizophrenia. The key to optimizing patients' outcomes is to ensure a patient's long-term continuation on medication. As treatment discontinuation can greatly impact the progression of the illness and the patient's ultimate outcome, selecting a treatment with maximum treatment effectiveness is optimal. Nonadherence to treatment is extremely prevalent among patients with schizophrenia, due to such factors as impaired cognition, lack of insight, and side effects associated with antipsychotic treatment. Atypical antipsychotics have shown some advantages over conventional antipsychotics in terms of reducing positive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia, preventing relapse, and incidence of tardive dyskinesia. Injectables and long-acting formulations of antipsychotics offer additional benefits in terms of ensuring treatment adherence.
This article was published in CNS Spectr
and referenced in Journal of Psychiatry