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Psychiatry Res. 2011 Aug 30;189(1):21-5. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2010.11.021. Epub 2011 Jan 7.

Metabolic syndrome and serum homocysteine in patients with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia treated with second generation antipsychotics.

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University Hospital Zagreb, Psychiatric Clinic, Kišpatićeva Street, Zagreb, Croatia.


There is accumulating evidence for an increased prevalence of metabolic syndrome (MetS) in bipolar patients, which is comparable to the prevalence of MetS in patients with schizophrenia. Hyperhomocysteinaemia has emerged as an independent and graded risk factor for the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD), which is, at the same time, the primary clinical outcome of MetS. The aim of this study was to ascertain if the presence of MetS was associated with hyperhomocysteinaemia in patients with bipolar disorder (N=36) and schizophrenia (N=46) treated with second-generation antipsychotics (SGA). MetS was defined according to the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III (NCEP ATP-III) criteria and the cut-off point for hyperhomocysteinaemia was set up at 15 μmoll(-1). Results of the study indicated that the presence of the MetS is statistically significantly associated with the elevated serum homocysteine in all participants. As hyperhomocysteinaemia has emerged as an independent risk factor for psychiatric disorder and CVD, it could be useful to include fasting homocysteine serum determination in the diagnostic panels of psychiatric patients to obtain a better assessment of their metabolic risk profile.

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