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Weight gain with add-on second-generation antipsychotics in bipolar disorder: a naturalistic study

Journal article
Authors Hemen Najar
Erik Joas
Mathias Kardell
Erik Pålsson
Mikael Landén
Published in Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Volume 135
Issue 6
Pages 606-611
ISSN 0001-690X
Publication year 2017
Published at Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, Department of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry
Pages 606-611
Language en
Links 10.1111/acps.12737
Keywords bipolar disorder, antipsychotic, weight gain, psychotropic-drug prescription, i disorder, insulin-secretion, obesity, status, olanzapine, risperidone, lithium, association, predictors, diagnoses
Subject categories Psychiatry, Endocrinology and Diabetes


ObjectiveOur aim was to investigate the prevalence and magnitude of weight gain in-patients with bipolar disorder when treated with a second-generation antipsychotic as an add-on treatment to a mood stabilizer in routine clinical practice. MethodsData were derived from the quality register for bipolar disorder in Sweden (BipolaR). Patients with bipolar disorder who started add-on treatment with a SGA (n=575) were compared at next yearly follow-up with age and sex matched patients who were only treated with a mood stabilizer (n=566). The primary outcome measure was change in body weight and body mass index (BMI). We also assessed the prevalence of clinically significant weight gain defined as 7% gain in body weight. ResultsThe group that received add-on treatment with antipsychotics neither gained more weight nor were at higher risk for a clinically significant weight gain than the reference group. Instead, factors associated with clinically significant weight gain were female sex, young age, low-baseline BMI, and occurrence of manic/hypomanic episodes. ConclusionWe found no evidence of an overall increased risk of weight gain for patients with bipolar disorder after receiving add-on SGA to a mood stabilizer in a routine clinical setting.

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