Penfluridol, A Peroral Long-Acting Neuroleptic, for the Maintenance Treatment of Schizophrenic Patients Who Relapse
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In a multicenter collaborative study, 28 newly readmitted schizophrenic patients, stabilized for one week on short-acting neuroleptic drugs, had their medication abruptly changed to penfluridol given once a week on an outpatient basis. The average dose required for maintenance was approximately 40 mg weekly. Analysis of BPRS evaluations carried out during the 16-week trial revealed a significant linear trend toward further improvement. Social functioning, as measured by the KAS questionnaire in the outpatient period of the trial, also revealed a significant linear trend toward improvement. Significant worsening was not found with any psychometric evaluation. Side effects, when observed, were neither frequent nor severe. Three laboratory and vital sign values showed significant changes: increase in BUN concentrations, decrease in pulse rate, and increase in body weight. The changes in weight and pulse appeared to be within relatively normal ranges, and the increase in BUN concentrations did not appear to be clinically significant. During the first part of a long-term study, penfluridol received a high degree of patient acceptability and is a welcome addition to the maintenance treatment of schizophrenia.
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