Clozapine and Cancer Risk: New Data

Dr. Jari Tiihonen Long-term treatment with clozapine is associated with a small, but significant, risk of hematological malignancies in individuals with schizophrenia, new research shows. Investigators found long-term clozapine use of more than 5 years was linked to a 2.7-fold increased risk of hematological malignancies in a dose-dependent manner compared with other antipsychotics. “Our results … Read more

Do Psychotropic Meds Raise or Lower COVID Risk?

Editor’s note: Find the latest COVID-19 news and guidance in Medscape’s Coronavirus Resource Center. Different psychotropic medications are associated with different risks of COVID-19 in hospitalized patients with serious mental illness, a new study suggests. Investigators found that second-generation antipsychotics were associated with a 48% lower risk of COVID-19, while valproic acid was associated with … Read more

Antipsychotic Switch Rates Suggest ‘Suboptimal’ FEP Prescribing

High rates of antipsychotic switching in first episode psychosis (FEP) suggests first-line prescribing is less than optimal and does not follow recent clinical guidance. In a large-scale, real-world analysis of researchers UK prescribing patterns, found more than two thirds of patients who received antipsychotics for FEP switched medication and almost half switched drugs three times. … Read more

New Med for Severe Mental Illness Tied to Less Weight Gain

Olanzapine plus samidorphan (Lybalvi) vs olanzapine alone is associated with less weight gain while achieving similar clinical outcomes in patients with recent-onset severe mental illness, new research suggests. However, least one expert says the weight difference between the two drugs is of “questionable clinical benefit.” Last year, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved … Read more

Methylphenidate Is Overprescribed to Children in France

The prevalence of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is difficult to evaluate, and the diagnosis is based primarily on clinical criteria. In 2008, a French study estimated the prevalence to be between 3.5% and 5.6%, but the study’s design was questionable. Treatment of this disorder consists first and foremost in educational, social, and psychotherapeutic management. Only if … Read more

A Novel Target in Schizophrenia?

AUT00206, a novel compound that targets potassium channels in brain interneurons, not only improves gamma oscillations in patients with schizophrenia, it also improves their symptoms, new randomized trial data suggest. In a randomized, double-blind study that included two dozen men with schizophrenia, AUT00206 compared with placebo increased the power of gamma oscillations, which were in … Read more

Novel Long-Acting Injection Cuts Schizophrenia Relapse

A long-acting subcutaneous antipsychotic (LASCA) suspension that combines risperidone with a novel copolymer substantially reduces both risk for relapse and time to impending relapse for patients with schizophrenia, new research suggests. In the phase 3 Risperidone Subcutaneous Extended-release (RISE) trial, which included more than 500 patients with schizophrenia, those who received the novel combination treatment, … Read more