Past Issues

Effectiveness of Exercise Intervention for Overweight Patients with Schizophrenia

Huan-Kwang Ferng, M.D., M.S.1, Jia-Fu Lee, M.D., Ph.D.2, Guoo-Shyng W. Hsu, Ph.D.3, Senyeong Kao, Ph.D.4, Pai-Yuan Kao, B.S., M.S.5, Chung Chen, B.S., M.S.

Objective: One of the common side effects of antipsychotic medication is weight gain, with serious implications for a patient's health and well being. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the effectiveness of exercise for weight loss and improvement of hyperglycemia and/or hyperlipidemia in schizophrenic patients taking antipsychotic medications. Method: Fifty-one subjects with schizophrenia disorder (DSM- IV) who had been treated with antipsychotic drugs for at least 10 weeks with a BMI >24.9 kg/m2 were recruited for this study. Subjects were assigned to a control group (26 out of 51) or an experimental group (25 out of 51). Twelve weeks of exercise was given as intervention to the experimental group while the control group continued receiving only regular clinical care. Anthropometric measurements were taken. Body composition, blood biochemistry values and 24-hour dietary records were made. Results: There was no significant difference in calorie and macronutrient intake between the experimental and the control group. Compared with controls, weight loss (+1.72 ± 3.0 vs.-0.86 ± 2.8 kg, P <0.05) and decreasing body mass index (+0.61 ± 1.1 vs. -0.35 ±1.0, P <0.05) were greater in the experimental group. However, exercise did not improve the subjects' fasting blood sugar and plasma lipid concentration. Conclusion:Amajor observation useful for patient education is that overweight schizophrenic patients (aged 40-65 years, body mass index (BMI) 25-35 kg/m2) with mildto- moderate lipid abnormalities who eat about 2,000 kcal/day, without regular exercise may continue to gain weight at a rate of nearly 1 kg monthly. If exercise is to be recommended for individuals with schizophrenia, the optimal intensity and duration of exercise needs to be identified. Weight loss may be difficult, but it is not impossible for schizophrenic patients. (Full text in Chinese)
Key Word obesity, schizophrenia, exercise intervention, aerobic exercise
Editorial Committe, Taiwanese Journal of Psychiatry
9F-3, 22, Song-Jiang Rd., Taipei 104, Taiwan
Email/ │ TEL/886-2-2567-8295 │ FAX/886-2-2567-8218