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Aust N Z J Psychiatry. 2007 Jul;41(7):606-10.

Obesity and metabolic syndrome in a psychiatric rehabilitation service.

Author information

  • 1Hunter New England Area Health Services, James Fletcher Hospital, Newcastle, NSW, Australia. Srinivasan.Tirupati@hnehealth.nsw.gov.au



People with schizophrenia and bipolar disorders suffer from increased rates of obesity and metabolic syndrome. Metabolic disorders add to the burden of disease and affect treatment and rehabilitation outcomes. This study aimed to study the prevalence of obesity and metabolic syndrome in people with chronic psychotic disorders in a psychiatric rehabilitation setting.


All patients in the psychiatry rehabilitation program were assessed for obesity and metabolic syndrome using the definition of International Diabetes Federation (2005) was conducted as part of clinical protocol recently introduced into practice.


A total of 221 patients were assessed. The prevalence of obesity was 59% and metabolic syndrome 68%. Metabolic syndrome was more frequent in patients receiving polypharmacy with multiple antipsychotics and mood stabilisers. Rates of nontreatment for metabolic disorders ranged from 30% to 88%.


The rates of obesity and metabolic syndrome in patients with chronic severe mental disorders on antipsychotic drug treatment were 2 to 3 times that in the general population. A majority of them were untreated. Detection, monitoring and appropriate treatment of obesity and metabolic disorders should be a component of an assertive care management program to reduce morbidity and mortality and improve rehabilitation outcomes.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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