June 07, 2005

Schizophrenic Meds & Diabetes

Undiagnosed diabetes found in patients receiving antipsychotics

We've covered this before - but this is another study that draws the conclusion that people on antipsychotic medications need to work with their doctors to make sure they are not developing diabetes.

A recent study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology states:"The associations between psychosis, antipsychotic
(drugs used to treat psychosis), and diabetes mellitus (usually defined as a "disorder that occurs when the body is not able to use sugar for growth and energy for daily activities") have not been precisely defined but it has been repeatedly suggested that atypical antipsychotics are more likely to give rise to diabetes than are conventional drugs." Diabetes is always a concern because of the significant impacts that it can have on the body.

The study "examined records of 606 hospitalized patients receiving antipsychotic treatment and found an apparent prevalence of diabetes and impaired fasting glucose (usually defined as a "measurement of the blood glucose (blood sugar - the body's main source of energy) in the morning prior to the ingestion of any food for the prior 12 hours) of 6.4%."

The study "concluded that there was a clinically significant prevalence of undiagnosed diabetes and impaired fasting glucose in those individuals receiving antipsychotics. Importantly, database analyses may underestimate the true prevalence of diabetes in similar populations and erroneously ascribe increased risk to certain drug treatments." Regardless, it seems worthwhile to consider the possibility of developing diabetes while participating in antipsychotic treatment.

This study was conducted at Maudsley Hospital


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