An interesting study, but most of the participants were older people taking the antipsychotics for dementia.
Investigators at the University of Buenos Aires, in Argentina, found that patients taking second-generation antipsychotics who experienced a high level or an intermediate level of metabolic changes had an almost threefold increased risk of experiencing a cardiovascular event ― especially stroke ― compared to their counterparts taking medications that were associated with a lower risk for metabolic changes.
Patients at high risk included those taking a combination of two or more antipsychotics concomitantly.
On the basis of the crude cumulative incidence of outcome measures, stroke was the cardiovascular event most associated with risk level in the antipsychotics: 10.5% and 17.2% in the intermediate- and high-risk groups, respectively, vs 9.0% in the low risk group.
These agents are not typically used in older adults unless they have dementia. Since a relatively low percentage of participants had schizophrenia, most study participants were elderly patients with dementia," he said.
He pointed out that the cardiovascular effects of these medications in younger patients “are less obvious because there is a long lead time for the cardiovascular endpoints to emerge and develop.”
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