Aripiprazole in schizophrenia: consensus guidelines.
Travis MJ., Burns T., Dursun S., Fahy T., Frangou S., Gray R., Haddad PM., Hunter R., Taylor DM., Young AH.
Schizophrenia is a chronic disabling disease which in the majority of cases requires long-term treatment with antipsychotic medication. Before the development of atypical antipsychotics, treatment choice was restricted to conventional (or typical) antipsychotics, which are known to cause a range of side effects including extrapyramidal symptoms. Although atypical agents provide a favourable alternative (advocated by the National Institute of Clinical Excellence in the UK), they are associated with side effects. These differ between agents, but can include weight gain, sedation and hyperprolactinaemia. Aripiprazole is a newly available atypical antipsychotic for the treatment of schizophrenia. With the apparent imitations of currently available medications, aripiprazole provides clinicians with another treatment option. The purpose of these guidelines is to outline the consensus reached by the Schizophrenia Innovation Working Group on best practice in prescribing and appropriate use of aripiprazole in the UK.