Thursday, May 08, 2008

Distress About Adverse Effects Drives Non-compliance in Schizophrenia

Distress about adverse effects of therapy is the most important reason that patients with schizophrenia do not adhere to their prescribed treatment, researchers reported at the Annual Meeting of the American Psychiatric Association (APA).

Dr. Sapra and colleagues performed an assessment of attitudes as part of a larger study that compared the effectiveness of long-acting injectable versus oral atypical antipsychotic therapy for patients with a first episode of schizophrenia participating in the Prevent First-Episode Relapse (PREFER) study.

Among patients who had not adhered to therapy, strong influences were adverse effects (33%), no benefit (27% rated lack of benefit as a strong influence), and denial of illness, (27%). Absence of daily benefit and distress due to adverse effects had the highest median scores.

Dr. Sapra explained that, "as patients stayed on treatment, they felt they did not need it any longer.