The FDA has approved the supplemental New Drug Applications for paliperidone palmitate (Invega Sustenna) to treat schizoaffective disorder as either monotherapy or adjunctive therapy.
The FDA has approved the supplemental New Drug Applications for paliperidone palmitate (Invega Sustenna) to treat schizoaffective disorder as either monotherapy or adjunctive therapy. The drug is a once-monthly atypical long-acting antipsychotic produced by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, Inc. Invega Sustena is the first approved once-monthly medication to treat the disorder as monotherapy.
The approval comes following a long-term maintenance study that measured the ability to delay relapse in schizoaffective disorder. The study included a six-month open-label treatment period and a 15-month double-blind period.
Over the last two decades, use of second-generation antipsychotic medications has increased, with more frequent use in youths than in adults. In the study Atypical Antipsychotic Use Among Medicaid-Insured Children and Adolescents: Duration, Safety, and Monitoring Implications, the authors examined duration of atypical antipsychotic use by age group and Medicaid eligibility category among youths with non-comorbid ADHD. The study produced some striking results: Within this population, the median annual duration of atypical antipsychotic use was 180 days, with children 2-12 years old having longer durations of use than adolescents 13-17 years old. In addition, youths in foster-care diagnosed with ADHD with no other psychiatric co-morbidities were three times more likely to use atypical antipsychotics than youths in other Medicaid categories (CHIP and TANF programs). Although atypical antipsychotic medications can be beneficial, these results raise important questions about how prescribing practices and long-term use of psychiatric medications should be monitored to minimize medication side-effects and promote overall health, particularly in the youth population.
Mehmet Burcu, Julie Magno Zito, Aloysius Ibe, and Daniel J. Safer (2014). Atypical Antipsychotic Use Among Medicaid-Insured Children and Adolescents: Duration, Safety, and Monitoring Implications. Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, 24(3): 1-8.
Individuals with severe mental illness (SMI) including schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, schizoaffective disorder, and major depressive disorder are prone to many different physical health problems. Although these diseases are also prevalent in the general population, they have a greater impact on individuals with severe mental illnesses. Many factors contribute to the poor physical health of individuals with severe mental illness, including disparities in health care access and utilization as well as provision of healthcare services. Studies have shown that individuals with severe mental illness have an excess mortality, being two to three times as high as that of the general population. This mortality gap translates to a thirteen to thirty year shortened life expectancy (Hert, et al. 2011). How can physical health monitoring and access to healthcare be improved among patients with severe mental illness? What are some of the barriers to monitoring physical health in this patient population? We attempt to address some of these issues in A Summary for Monitoring Physical Health and Side-Effects of Psychiatric Medications in the Severely Mentally Ill Population and appreciate your thoughts and comments on these very important issues.