Switching antipsychotics to partial dopamine D2-agonists in individuals affected by schizophrenia: a narrative review.


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Switching antipsychotics to partial dopamine D2-agonists in individuals affected by schizophrenia: a narrative review.
International journal of psychiatry in clinical practice
Baumann P., Bauknecht P., Kuzin M., Schoretsanitis G.
1471-1788 (Electronic)
Publication state
In Press
Publication types: Journal Article ; Review
Publication Status: aheadofprint
The aim of this review is to analyse the literature regarding studies centred on the clinical outcome of individuals affected by schizophrenia and treated with various antipsychotics, and then switched to orally administered partial D2-dopamine agonists (PD2A): Aripiprazole (ARI), brexpiprazole (BREX) or cariprazine (CARI).
A PubMed literature search was performed on 16 February 2021, and updated on Jan 26, 2022 for literature on antipsychotic switching in individuals affected by schizophrenia. Literature was included from 2002 onward. Six strategies were defined: Abrupt, gradual and cross-taper switch, and 3 hybrid strategies. The primary outcome was all-cause discontinuation rate per switch strategy per goal medication.
In 10 reports on switching to ARI, 21 studies with different strategies were described, but there were only 4 reports and 5 strategies on switching to BREX. Only one study about CARI was included, but it was not designed as a switch study. The studies are difficult to compare due to differences in methodology, previous antipsychotic medication, doses of the introduced P2DA and study duration.
This analysis did not reveal evidence for a preferable switching strategy. A protocol should be developed which defines optimal duration, instruments to be used, and the timing of the exams.KEY MESSAGESMost switch studies on partial D2-agonists focus on ARI, with only a few on BREX, while little is known about the clinical outcome of switching individuals to CARIThere is a wide variation of possible switch methods: Abrupt switch - gradual switch - cross-tapering switch - hybrid strategies including plateau switchThe protocols used differ considerably between the studies. A strict comparison between the studies is difficult, for which reason the present evidence does not support an unambiguous preference for a particular switch strategy.From a methodological point of view, a standardised clinical protocol should be developed to allow comparisons between studies regarding the clinical outcome of individuals switched from one antipsychotic drug to another.
Psychiatry and Mental health, Partial D2-dopamine receptor agonists, antipsychotics, aripiprazole, brexpiprazole, cariprazine, schizophrenia spectrum disease, switch
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Open Access
Create date
12/07/2023 11:34
Last modification date
15/08/2023 6:59
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