Is the Evidence Strong Enough to Warrant Long-Term Antipsychotic Use in Compulsory Outpatient Treatment?

Is the Evidence Strong Enough to Warrant Long-Term Antipsychotic Use in Compulsory Outpatient Treatment?

Psychiatr Serv. 2016 Mar 15;:appips201500408

Authors: Barnes SS, Badre N

Abstract
Debate surrounding assisted outpatient treatment has mostly focused on issues of due process, cost-effectiveness, and efficacy as measured by readmission and incarceration rates. Less attention has been paid to whether long-term use of antipsychotic treatment is supported by sufficient evidence to warrant its compulsory use in assisted outpatient treatment programs. The authors examine the rationale and evidence for long-term use of antipsychotics, noting the pervasive belief within the psychiatric community that psychotic illness, especially schizophrenia, requires lifelong medication. They argue that although antipsychotics are clearly indicated for patients in the acute phase of psychotic illness, the evidence for long-term use is less convincing and may not justify compulsory long-term use.

PMID: 26975525 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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