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J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2001 Aug;21(4):360-8.

A double-blind, randomized, prospective evaluation of the efficacy and safety of risperidone versus haloperidol in the treatment of schizoaffective disorder.

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  • 1The Psychiatric Clinical Research Center and Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, University of Illinois at Chicago, 60612, USA. pjanicak@psych.uic.edu


The relative efficacy and safety of risperidone versus haloperidol in the treatment of schizoaffective disorder was studied. Sixty-two patients (29 depressed type; 33 bipolar type) entered a three-site, randomized, double-blind, 6-week trial of risperidone (up to 10 mg/day) or haloperidol (up to 20 mg/day). Trained raters assessed baseline, weekly, and end-of-study levels of psychopathology with the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS), the 24-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAM-D-24) and the Clinician-Administered Rating Scale for Mania (CARS-M). The authors were unable to statistically distinguish between risperidone and haloperidol in the amelioration of psychotic and manic symptoms. In addition, there was no difference in worsening of mania between the two agents in either subgroup (i.e., depressed or bipolar subgroups). For the total PANSS, risperidone produced a mean decrease of 16 points from baseline compared with a 14-point decrease with haloperidol. For the total CARS-M scale, risperidone and haloperidol produced mean change scores of 5 and 8 points, respectively, and for the CARS-M Mania subscale, 3 and 7 points, respectively. Additionally, risperidone produced a mean decrease of 13 points from the baseline 24-item HAM-D, compared with an 8-point decrease with haloperidol. In those patients who had more severe depressive symptoms (i.e., HAM-D baseline score >20), risperidone produced at least a 50% mean improvement in 12 (75%) of 16 patients in comparison to 8 (38%) of 21 patients receiving haloperidol. Haloperidol produced significantly more extrapyramidal side effects and resulted in more dropouts caused by any side effect. There was no difference between risperidone and haloperidol in reducing both psychotic and manic symptoms in this group of patients with schizoaffective disorder. Risperidone did not demonstrate a propensity to precipitate mania and was better tolerated than haloperidol. In those subjects with higher baseline HAM-D scores (i.e., >20), risperidone produced a greater improvement in depressive symptoms than haloperidol.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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