New consensus guidelines on the pharmacological treatment of schizophrenia

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The British Association for Psychopharmacology regularly publish consensus guidelines on the pharmacological treatment of mental health conditions. In the last two years these publications have included guidance on insomnia (PDF), dementia (PDF) and bipolar disorder (PDF).

The latest guideline from the BAP is on the pharmacological treatment of schizophrenia and as usual it’s available in full-text via their website.

The recommendations cover the various stages of the illness, including first-episode, relapse prevention and illness that has proved refractory to standard treatment.

The guideline is primarily aimed at psychiatrists, but may also be of interest to general practitioners, other healthcare providers, patients and their families.

The topics covered are:

  • Early intervention: Prodromal/‘at-risk’ mental states
  • First-episode psychosis
  • Acute psychotic episode
  • Maintaining response
  • Adherence to antipsychotic medication
  • Adverse effects of antipsychotics
  • The pharmacological treatment of schizophrenia during pregnancy and breastfeeding
  • Pharmacological management of negative symptoms
  • Pharmacological strategies for cognitive impairment
  • Pharmacological strategies for comorbid substance misuse
  • Pharmacological treatment of incomplete recovery

Barnes TR; Schizophrenia Consensus Group of British Association for Psychopharmacology. Evidence-based guidelines for the pharmacological treatment of schizophrenia: recommendations from the British Association for Psychopharmacology (PDF). J Psychopharmacol. 2011 May;25(5):567-620. Epub 2011 Feb 3.

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