New York—Schizophrenia patients whose symptoms do not respond to standard antipsychotic medications have better outcomes if they are switched to clozapine instead of another standard antipsychotic, according to a new study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry. According to Columbia University Medical Center researchers who sought to find “real world” treatment solutions, the patients on clozapine have fewer hospitalizations, stay on the new medication longer, and are less likely to need to use additional antipsychotics. Study authors note that clozapine is often seen as a drug of last resort, although it is the only medication approved by the FDA for treatment-resistant schizophrenia. Their study was conducted using national Medicaid data from 6,246 patients whose treatment patterns were consistent with resistance to standard schizophrenia therapy.

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