Strategies for Improving Compliance in Treatment of Schizophrenia by Using a Long-Acting Formulation of an Antipsychotic: Clinical Studies

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Despite evidence showing the importance of continuous medication in preventing relapse in patients with schizophrenia and the harmful consequences that relapse can have, clinical efforts often focus on hospital-based treatment or treatment of acute exacerbations of schizophrenia rather than on ensuring appropriate and effective relapse prevention. Inadequate compliance with antipsychotic treatment further deters from the goal of long-term management of schizophrenia; however, appropriate use of injectable, long-acting antipsychotic medications—especially atypical antipsychotics—has the potential to increase compliance and thus improve the long-term prognosis of patients with schizophrenia. A long-acting formulation of the atypical antipsychotic risperidone has undergone large-scale clinical testing, during which it showed significant improvement on measures of disease severity while maintaining an acceptable side effect profile.

J Clin Psychiatry 2003;64(suppl 16):34-40