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Letter to the Editor

Olanzapine May Cause Delirium in Geriatric Patients

Steven Samuels MD and Margaret Fang MD

Published: April 1, 2004

Article Abstract

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Sir: Olanzapine, a second-generation antipsychotic, is indicated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for schizophrenia and bipolar I acute mania but has limited evidence for use in elderly patients with these conditions.1 Olanzapine was FDA-approved in December 2003 for maintenance monotherapy for bipolar disorder. Olanzapine at doses up to 20 mg is recommended to treat schizophrenia and acute mania.2 The package insert, however, recommends a lower dosage in geriatric patients, based upon studies of elderly with schizophrenia or dementia with psychotic symptoms, not those with acute mania.

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