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Therapeutic considerations in the treatment of major psychiatric disorders

The pharmacological treatment of major psychiatric disorders is based on antipsychotic medication (for schizophrenia and manic episodes of mood disorders) and on antidepressants (for the depressive episodes of mood disorders). The main pharmacotherapeutic considerations concern efficacy, side-effects and tolerability. These issues are related to pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic characteristics of the various medications such as the affinity to various receptors, selectivity to those which are most relevant in the pathophysiology of the disorders, and drug half life. These qualities are associated to the optimum daily dosing, dose regimen and the mode of escalation of the doses of each drug, as well as to its side-effect profile. These issues will be discussed for antipsychotics and antidepressants, in a practical manner, together with general issues in pharmacotherapy related to polypharmacy and combinations with other drug classes, whenever this is appropriate.

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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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Dikaios, D. Therapeutic considerations in the treatment of major psychiatric disorders. Ann Gen Psychiatry 7 (Suppl 1), S58 (2008).

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