Patients receiving paliperidone extended-release tablets (paliperidone ER) spent significantly fewer days in hospital, had significantly fewer emergency room and psychiatric-related office visits, and fewer psychotherapy sessions, compared with the year before starting treatment, according to a new analysis of data presented at the 161st Annual Meeting of the American Psychiatric Association (APA) in Washington, DC.
In the analysis, researchers retrospectively reviewed the charts of 79 of the patients who had participated in any of three multi-centre, double-blind, randomised six-week trials of paliperidone ER and placebo, and were then entered into a 12-month open-label extension (OLE) phase.
The investigators compared the number of days a patient was hospitalised for psychiatric reasons in the 12 months before being screened for the trial (pre-period) with those in the 12-month OLE phase (post-period) following administration of the first dose of paliperidone ER. Most of the patients (70.9%) had received prior antipsychotic medication during the pre-period.
The results showed that patients taking paliperidone ER used significantly fewer healthcare resources after starting on the medication than in the one-year period before entering the trials.
Patients had an average of 12 fewer hospital days, 0.3 fewer emergency room visits, two fewer psychiatric-related office visits and 0.4 fewer psychotherapy sessions.
“Due to its chronic nature and the need for frequent hospitalisation, schizophrenia is associated with significant economic burden,” said Dr Philip Janicak, Professor of Psychiatry, Rush University Medical Center and one of the lead investigators in the trial.
“Treating physicians, patients and their families would welcome treatment options that may help reduce resource use.”