Increased Mortality in Elderly Patients with Dementia Related Psychosi; Suicidal Thoughts and Behaviors with Antidepressant Drugs
Increased Mortality in Elderly Patients with Dementia Related Psychosis
- Elderly patients with dementia related psychosis treated with atypical antipsychotic drugs are at an increased risk of death compared to placebo.
- Analyses of seventeen placebo controlled trials (modal duration of 10 weeks), largely in patients taking atypical antipyschotic drugs, revealed a risk of death in the drug treated patients of between 1.6 to 1.7 times that seen in placebo treated patients. Over the course of a typical 10-week controlled trial, the rate of death in drug treated patients was about 4.5% compared to a rate of about 2.6% in the placebo group.
- Although the causes of death were varied, most of the deaths appeared to be either cardiovascular (e.g., heart failure, sudden death) or infectious (e.g., pneumonia) in nature.
- Observational studies suggest that, similar to atypical antipsychotic drugs, treatment with conventional antipsychotic drugs may increase mortality.
- The extent to which the findings of increased mortality in observational studies may be attributed to the antipsychotic drug as opposed to some characteristic(s) of the patients is not clear.
- This drug is not approved for the treatment of patients with dementia-related psychosis (See WARNINGS in package insert).
Suicidality and Antidepressant Drugs
- Antidepressants increased the risk compared to placebo of suicidal thinking and behavior (suicidality) in children, adolescents, and young adults in short-term studies of Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and other psychiatric disorders.
- Anyone considering the use of adjunctive Abilify or any other antidepressant in a child, adolescent, or young adult must balance this risk with the clinical need.
- Short-term studies did not show an increase in the risk of suicidality with antidepressants compared to placebo in adults beyond age 24; there was a reduction in risk with antidepressants compared to placebo in adults aged 65 and older.
- Depression and certain other psychiatric disorders are themselves associated with increases in the risk of suicide.
- Patients of all ages who are started on antidepressant therapy should be monitored appropriately and observed closely for clinical worsening, suicidality, or unusual changes in behavior.
- Families and caregivers should be advised of the need for close observation and communication with the prescriber. Abilify is not approved for use in pediatric patients with depression [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS (5.2)].
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