Adjunctive mood stabilizer and benzodiazepine use in older Asian patients with schizophrenia, 2001-2009

Y. T. Xiang, F. Dickerson, J. Kreyenbuhl, G. S. Ungvari, C. Y. Wang, T. M. Si, E. H M Lee, Y. L. He, H. F K Chiu, S. Y. Yang, M. Y. Chong, C. H. Tan, E. H. Kua, S. Fujii, K. Sim, M. K H Yong, J. K. Trivedi, E. K. Chung, P. Udomratn, K. Y. CheeN. Sartorius, N. Shinfuku

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


Objective: This study surveyed the use of adjunctive mood stabilizers (MS) and benzodiazepines (BZD) in older Asian schizophrenia patients and examined their demographic and clinical correlates. Method: Information on hospitalized schizophrenia patients aged 55 years or more were extracted from the database of the Research on Asian Psychotropic Prescription Patterns (REAP) study. A total of 1452 patients from 9 Asian countries and territories was included in the study. The patients sociodemographic and clinical characteristics and the prescriptions of antipsychotics, MS and BZD were recorded using a standardized protocol and data collection procedure. Results: The frequency of MS prescription was 26.7% in the pooled sample, with 25.5% in 2001, 26.9% in 2004 and 27.7% in 2009. The corresponding figures for BZD were 20.7%, 20.2%, 18.4% and 23.1%, respectively. Multiple logistic regression analysis of the whole sample revealed that patients on MS were younger and more likely to be men and to have extrapyramidal side effects (EPS) and a longer duration of illness. Compared to patients in China, those in Japan were more likely to receive MS, while Korean patents were prescribed less MS. In contrast, there were no significant sociodemographic or clinical correlates of BZD use. Compared to patients in China, their Korean and Singaporean counterparts were more likely to be on BZD. Conclusions: The use of MS and BZD is not uncommon in older Asian patients with schizophrenia. Given the paucity of empirical data on the efficacy of these agents in individuals with schizophrenia of any age and concerns about added side effects in older patients in particular, the rationale for the prescription of these agents in this population warrants further examination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)217-222
Number of pages6
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2012


  • Asia
  • benzodiazepines
  • mood stabilizers
  • older patients
  • prescription patterns
  • schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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