Older and Newer Strategies for the Pharmacological Management of Agitation in Patients with Bipolar Disorder or Schizophrenia

Author(s): Giovanni Amodeo*, Andrea Fagiolini, Gabriele Sachs, Andreas Erfurth.

Journal Name: CNS & Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets
(Formerly Current Drug Targets - CNS & Neurological Disorders)

Volume 16 , Issue 8 , 2017

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Graphical Abstract:


Background: The management of acute agitation in patients with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia is a multifaceted and dynamic task, which presents unique and complex challenges to healthcare providers.

Objective: To ascertain and describe which medications are best to use in patients with agitation, affected by bipolar disorder or schizophrenia.

Method: Selective review of current literature and guidelines referred to the treatment of agitation in individuals affected with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia

Results: When possible, the pharmacologic management of agitation should be preceded by a in-depth evaluation of the possible causes of the agitation. The use for of first and second-generation antipsychotic medications, of benzodiazepines and of the newer inhaled antipsychotic loxapine, is reviewed and commented.

Conclusion: The mainstay of medication treatment of acute agitation should be based on a thotough assessment cause. If agitation is due to delirium or to another physial condition, an attempt to address the underlying causes should be always considered. When agitation is primarily due to schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, antipsychotics and/or benzodiazepines are usually the mainstay of treatment. Newer inhaled formulation of loxapine has shown ability to rapidly reduce the agitation in mild to moderate patients with schizophrenia or bipolar disorder, with a decrease in agitation that was evident since the first assessment, 10 minutes after the first dose.

Keywords: Agitation, bipolar, schizophrenia, antipsychotics, benzodiazepines, loxapine, intramuscular, oral, inhaled.

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Article Details

Year: 2017
Page: [885 - 890]
Pages: 6
DOI: 10.2174/1871527316666170919115507
Price: $65

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