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Efficacy of clozapine in patients with chronic schizophrenia

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Author(s): Varuni de Silva | Raveen Hanwella

Journal: Sri Lanka Journal of Psychiatry
ISSN 2012-6883

Volume: 1;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 47;
Date: 2010;
Original page

Keywords: clozapine | schizophrenia | Sri Lanka

ABSTRACT
Background Clozapine is the most effective treatment for refractory schizophrenia. There is evidence that clozapine improves social and occupational functioning and patients’ quality of life. Aims To evaluate the presence of psychopathology and level of functioning in a cohort of patients treated with clozapine. Methods Sixty seven patients attending a clozapine clinic during a two month period were enrolled. Sociodemographic characteristics, duration of treatment and dose of clozapine were recorded. Symptom severity was measured using a psychopathology scale. Level of functioning was assessed using the "Psycho Social Functioning Scale". Results Of the sample 53.7% were males. Majority were aged 20-39 years. In the sample 7.4% were treated with clozapine for two years or less, 38.8% for 3-5 years and 40.3% for 6-10 years. Of the sample 43.3% were on 225-400 mg/day. In the self care sub scale 61 (95.3%) scored 13-15 from a maximum of 15. In the daily function sub scale 42 patients (65.7%) scored more than 10 from maximum 15 points. Thirteen males (36.1%) and 8 females (25.8%) were engaged in full time paid employment. Three males and 2 females were full time students. Another 6 (19.4%) females did full time household work. Conclusions Patients on long term treatment with clozapine showed low levels of psychopathology. In the majority self care and other daily functions were adequate. Many patients treated with clozapine were engaged in full time employment.
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