Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Clin Psychiatry. 2009 Jun;70(6):863-8. doi: 10.4088/JCP.08m04369. Epub 2009 May 5.

A long-term trial of the effectiveness and safety of atypical antipsychotic agents in augmenting SSRI-refractory obsessive-compulsive disorder.

Author information

  • 1Department of Neuropsychiatry, Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine, Osaka, Japan.



Although atypical antipsychotic agents have been found effective in the augmentation of serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SRIs) for treatment-resistant obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) in short-term trials, there are few data on the effectiveness and safety of these agents in clinical settings over the long term.


Subjects (N = 46) who responded to selective SRIs (SSRIs) in an initial 12-week trial were continued on SSRI monotherapy plus cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for 1 year. Subjects (N = 44) who failed to respond to SSRIs were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 atypical antipsychotics -- olanzapine, quetiapine, or risperidone -- and were consecutively treated using SSRI + atypical antipsychotics combined with CBT for 1 year. This study was conducted from January 2006 to November 2007 at Osaka City University Graduate School of Medicine Hospital, Japan.


Augmentation with atypical antipsychotics reduced mean +/- SD Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (YBOCS) total scores in SSRI-refractory OCD patients (at initial assessment = 29.3 +/- 9.9, after 1 year = 19.3 +/- 6.8). However, compared to SSRI responders (at initial assessment = 25.8 +/- 11.4, after 1 year = 13.7 +/- 4.6), total YBOCS scores in those who required atypical antipsychotic augmentation were initially higher, and they remained at higher levels than those of SRI responders after 1 year of the treatments.


Our work does not sufficiently support the long-term effectiveness of the atypical antipsychotics in the augmentation of SSRIs for treatment-resistant OCD patients. Even though this approach seems useful for some types of OCD patients, such as those with symmetry/ordering and hoarding symptoms, these data emphasize the limitations of the current pharmacotherapeutic options in treatment-refractory OCD, and their chronic use raises a number of safety concerns.


( Identifier NCT00854919.

Copyright 2009 Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Physicians Postgraduate Press, Inc.
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk