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Schizophr Res. 2018 Sep;199:374-379. doi: 10.1016/j.schres.2018.02.054. Epub 2018 Mar 8.

Clozapine use in early psychosis.

Author information

1
Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia; Centre for Youth Mental Health, The University of Melbourne, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia.
2
Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia; Centre for Youth Mental Health, The University of Melbourne, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia; Orygen Youth Health, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia.
3
Orygen, The National Centre of Excellence in Youth Mental Health, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia; Centre for Youth Mental Health, The University of Melbourne, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia; Orygen Youth Health, 35 Poplar Road, Parkville, Victoria 3052, Australia. Electronic address: brian.odonoghue@orygen.org.au.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

The superior efficacy of clozapine in treatment resistant schizophrenia has been clearly demonstrated, yet there are often delays in the commencement of clozapine. In this study, we aimed to determine; the proportion of young people with a first episode of psychosis (FEP) who would be considered eligible for clozapine treatment, the theoretical delay in commencing clozapine and to compare the outcomes of those treated with clozapine to those who were eligible but not treated with clozapine.

METHODS:

This study was conducted at Orygen Youth Health (OYH), a youth mental health service for young people aged 15-24. All clients who were treated at the Early Psychosis Prevention and Intervention Centre (EPPIC) clinic between 01.01.2011 and 31.12.2013 were included.

RESULTS:

544 young people presented with a FEP in the study period and 9.4% (N = 51) subsequently fulfilled criteria for treatment-resistant schizophrenia. Of these individuals, thirty (58.8%) were commenced on clozapine, in addition to a further eleven. The median delay to the commencement of clozapine was 42 weeks (I.Q.R. = 7.5-64). Of those commenced on clozapine, 76.6% achieved remission of positive psychotic symptoms and 50% were in employment or education by the time of discharge or transfer to the adult mental health services. The rate of discontinuation of clozapine was 24.4% and 60.0% of discontinuations were due to cardiac complications and the remainder were due to non-compliance.

CONCLUSIONS:

These findings suggest that early intervention for psychosis services have a crucial role in ensuring timely initiation of clozapine in individuals with a diagnosis of treatment-resistant schizophrenia.

KEYWORDS:

Antipsychotics; Clozapine; Delay; First episode psychosis; Schizophrenia

PMID:
29525463
DOI:
10.1016/j.schres.2018.02.054
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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