A study of 5-year outcomes for people taking either an ordinary oral antipsychotic or a long-acting injection of an antipsychotic found no differences between the two. In both groups, over 80% of the participants discontinued use of the drugs, mainly citing bad side effects and lack of efficacy.
Researchers from the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at Cardiff University in the UK followed nearly 200 patients at the beginning of the study who were taking either risperidone long-acting injection (RLAI) or aripiprazole. In the fifth year, there were only 50 who had not yet discontinued and were available for follow-up.
“Fifteen patients from each group were continuers at 5 years,” they wrote. “Of these, four receiving RLAI and three receiving aripiprazole were coprescribed other antipsychotics at study endpoint. Reasons for discontinuation of RLAI and aripiprazole respectively were lack of effect (n = 4; n = 4), adverse effects (n = 3; n = 1), noncompliance or patient choice (n = 2; n = 4) and patient death (n = 2; n = 0).”
“There was no significant difference between the proportions of patients continuing RLAI or aripiprazole for 5 years,” the researchers concluded. “Continuation rates were relatively low (18% and 16% of the original RLAI and aripiprazole cohorts respectively), whilst coprescription of other antipsychotics at endpoint was relatively common. Lack of effectiveness was the most common reason for discontinuation of both compounds. These findings suggested that clinical effectiveness was somewhat disappointing…”
Deslandes, Paul Nicholas, Matthew Dwivedi, and Robert D. E. Sewell. “Five-Year Patient Outcomes with Risperidone Long-Acting Injection or Oral Aripiprazole.” Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology, April 30, 2015, 2045125315581997. doi:10.1177/2045125315581997. (Abstract)