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Aust Prescr. 2015 Jun;38(3):95-7. Epub 2015 Jun 1.

Concerns about quetiapine.

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Clinical Pharmacology and Addiction Medicine, Drug Health, Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Sydney.


Quetiapine is subsidised by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. An extended-release formulation is also approved for use, but not subsidised, for treatment-resistant depression and generalised anxiety disorder. There is increasing off-label prescribing of quetiapine for indications such as insomnia that have little evidence to support them. This prescribing is often for at-risk patients, such as people with personality or social vulnerabilities and those at risk of metabolic complications or cardiovascular events. More evidence is required to support prescribing decisions regarding these off-label indications. In the meantime prescribers should be supported with alternatives to prescribing for these conditions, such as psychological therapies that have a better evidence base and safety record.


antipsychotics; off-label prescribing; quetiapine


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