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Antipsychotic drugs and metabolic disorders

NCEP-ATP III: The Metabolic Syndrome: Diagnosis is established when at least 3 of these risk factors are present

Table 1

The presence of Metabolic Syndrome increases the risk of Cardiovascular Disease death by 2,5-fold to 3,5-fold in comparison to subjects without the syndrome.

The prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome in general population is 24% and in untreated patients with Schizophrenia 37%. Patients with schizophrenia or bipolar disorders tend to be obese or have type-2 diabetes even before the administration of antipsychotics. Moreover, conventional antipsychotics and some atypical antipsychotics increase the trend for obesity or type-2 diabetes, because of their adverse effect on glucose and lipid metabolism.

Today, accumulated knowledge and advances in pharmacology permit safe and effective treatment of psychosis, related with improvement in several clinically significant health factors (beneficial effects on metabolic parameters and body weight). This could significantly reduce the prevalence of Metabolic Syndrome in patients with schizophrenia or bipolar disorders and consequently may diminish the associated Cardiovascular Disease risk.

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Open Access This article is published under license to BioMed Central Ltd. This is an Open Access article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Athyros, V. Antipsychotic drugs and metabolic disorders. Ann Gen Psychiatry 5 (Suppl 1), S9 (2006).

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