The present study is aimed at evaluating the efficacy and safety of long-acting risperidone on early onset schizophrenia in adolescent patients. A total of 31 adolescent patients (13 - 18 years) with schizophrenia met the DSM-IV-TR criteria for schizophrenia and their symptoms were stable when orally taking risperidone or olanzapine. They were admitted into a 24 week, open-label study on the long-acting risperidone. Risperidone was administered every 2 weeks at a dose of 25, 37.5 and up to a maximum dose of 50 mg. The Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS), the Clinical Global Impressions (CGI) and the Extrapyramidal Symptom Rating Scale (ESRS) were used to assess the improvement in the symptoms. Improvements in the symptoms of schizophrenia occurred in patients treated with long-acting risperidone at week 6 and continued throughout the study with significant reduction in total PANSS score at week 24 (-4.2 ± 0.2, P < 0.01). At the same time, 51.6% of patients were rated as clinical improvement at the end of study. Among these 31 cases, the most frequently reported adverse events were depression (12.9%), anxiety (9.7%), headache (9.7%) and insomnia (6.4%). ESRS scores were reduced during the treatment with long-acting risperidone. The mean decrease in serum prolactin and body weight was 13.1 ng/ml and 4.5 kg, respectively. Intramuscular administration of long-acting risperidone was safe and well tolerated in adolescent patients. Long-acting risperidone also could improve the symptoms of schizophrenia in adolescent patients.
Key words: Long-acting risperidone, early onset schizophrenia, oral risperidone, olanzapine, adolescents.
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