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Effects of Atypical Antipsychotics on Weight and Serum Lipid Levels

J Clin Psychiatry 2001;62(suppl 27):27-34

Psychiatrists have become particularly concerned about health issues in patients with schizophrenia because of emerging data that link some of the newer atypical antipsychotics with both significant weight gain and increases in serum triglyceride levels. Excessive weight gain during antipsychotic therapy has an adverse effect on health and medication compliance, while hyperlipidemia presents an additional cardiovascular risk factor in patients with schizophrenia who typically smoke, are inactive, and possess poor dietary habits. An understanding of appropriate monitoring for metabolic adverse effects is important for those who prescribe atypical antipsychotics, as is a working knowledge of behavioral and pharmacologic treatments for weight gain and hyperlipidemia.