Other health treatment for People Who

Charles E. Schwartz, M.D., Medical Decision-Making for People with Chronic Mental Impairments

    "Any discussion of issues relating to medical decision-making for people with chronic mental impairments must begin with the recognition that these individuals have traditionally received terrible medical care."


New Class of Antipsychotic Medications Linked to Increased Rate of Diabetes, Study Finds  08/22/2003

A new class of antipsychotic drugs is associated with an increased rate of diabetes, according to an unreleased but "widely anticipated" study of U.S. military veterans with schizophrenia, the Wall Street Journal reports.  According to the Journal, the study, which will be presented at a Philadelphia medical conference this weekend, could "wield broad influence" throughout the pharmaceutical industry and among psychiatrists because of the study's large size and the FDA's consideration of whether to order labeling changes for the leading antipsychotic drugs. People with schizophrenia develop diabetes "several times more frequently" than the general population, a "complicating factor" in evaluating new or old antipsychotic drugs, the Journal reports. For the study, researchers from the Department of Veterans Affairs, Boston University and the University of Illinois-Chicago examined the records of 12,235 patients who had no prior diagnosis of diabetes in pharmacy and patient databases during fiscal years 1999 through 2001 and found 739 cases of diabetes. Among the group of patients taking AstraZeneca's Seroquel, there were 3.34 times as many cases of diabetes as there were among patients taking older antipsychotic drugs, such as haloperidol and thioridazine, the Journal reports. Among patients taking Johnson & Johnson's Risperdal, the diabetes rate was 1.49 times, or 49% greater than the rate for older drugs. The diabetes rate for patients taking Eli Lilly's Zyprexa "appeared to be the least" -- 27% greater than the rate for older drugs. According to the Journal, the study suggests that any label warnings are "likely" to apply to the entire class of newer antipsychotic drugs rather than to one drug alone (Burton, Wall Street Journal, 8/22).

People who are taking some types of drugs for the treatment of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, autism, dementia or several other psychiatric disorders should be monitored for potential signs of diabetes, obesity or high cholesterol, four national medical societies recommend. Such side effects have been linked to the use of the antipsychotic medications Abilify, Clozaril, Geodon, Risperdal, Seroquel and Zyprexa.  http://www.intelihealth.com/IH/ihtIH/WSIHW000/333/21291/375164.html?d=dmtICNNews Associated Press, 1/27/04)

If you have links to abstracts or other citations please send them to sylvia@peoplewho.org .   I am especially interested in collecting here material that demonstrates that other health conditions of People Who are too often attributed to psychiatric diagnoses and not appropriately diagnosed and treated.  There are many many links to alternative health services that can be found with a search engine.   Listing those is not the purpose of this page, though I have included below a few that readers have sent.


CHCS http://www.chcs.org/  - promotes high quality health care services for low-income populations and people with chronic illnesses and disabilities.

Pfeiffer is a non-profit center that provides individualized biochemical therapy to patients looking for a natural treatment for imbalances associated with behavior disorders, learning problems, autism, depression, and schizophrenia. www.hriptc.org

orthomolecular medicine investigates underlying medical issues that can cause or contribute to mental symptoms.
www.orthomed.org  www.alternativementalhealth.com 


Do antipsychotic drugs place mentally-ill patients at increased risk for diabetes mellitus? http://www.jamaica-gleaner.com/gleaner/20040623/health/health1.html June 23, 2004