Controversies Surrounding the Use of Long-Acting Injectable Antipsychotic Medications for the Treatment of Patients with Schizophrenia

John M. Kane, Joseph P. McEvoy, Christoph U. Correll, Pierre Michel Llorca

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Schizophrenia is a serious mental illness that requires continuous and effective long-term management to reduce symptoms, improve quality of life, and prevent relapse. Oral antipsychotic medications have proven efficacy for many patients taking these medications; however, a considerable number of patients continue to experience ongoing symptoms and relapse, often due to lack of adherence. The advent of long-acting injectable (LAI) formulations of antipsychotic medications provided an opportunity to improve treatment adherence and overall patient outcomes. Despite data to support LAI efficacy, safety, and improved adherence over oral formulations, there are several misconceptions about and barriers to LAI implementation within a standard of care for patients with schizophrenia. Areas of resistance around LAIs include (1) doubts regarding their benefits outside of improved adherence, (2) questions regarding their prescribing to a broader population of patients with schizophrenia, (3) when to initiate LAIs, (4) concerns regarding the safety of LAIs in comparison with oral medication, and (5) the most effective ways to educate healthcare providers, patients, and caretakers to enable appropriate LAI consideration and acceptance. Here, we discuss these key controversies associated with LAIs and provide supportive evidence to facilitate LAI use in a manner that is constructive to the clinician–patient relationship and successful treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1189-1205
Number of pages17
JournalCNS Drugs
Volume35
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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