The novel or atypical antipsychotic medications introduced over the last decade represent a significant step forward in schizophrenia pharmacotherapy. While conventional antipsychotics effectively reduce psychotic symptoms, especially positive symptoms, they often induce extrapyramidal system side effects and tardive dyskinesia. The atypical agents are generally free of these unwanted effects and generally have a more favorable adverse-effect profile than conventional antipsychotics. Moreover, in addition to effectively treating positive psychotic symptoms, atypical agents are often helpful for patients unresponsive to conventional agents and may be more effective for negative symptoms and cognitive dysfunction. Economic studies to date suggest that overall treatment costs are generally no higher with atypical antipsychotics relative to conventional antipsychotics despite the atypical agents' higher acquisition costs. This review profiles the five available atypical agents' collective and individual roles, with an emphasis on each agent's advantages and disadvantages.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||18|
|State||Published - 2001|