Past Issues

Pharmacological Studies on Patients with Schizophrenia in Taiwan: A Compilation of Literature

Ya-Mei Bai

Our Taiwan psychiatrists have actively studied pharmacotherapy in patients
with schizophrenia. A compilation of lileration on this topic to gain an overview of
pharmacological studies of schizophrenia in Taiwan is useful for psychiatrists in
Taiwan to get quick and handy references. I identifi ed Science Citation Index
(SCI)-papers with the electronic search on the key words “antipsychotic,” “schizophrenia,”
and “Taiwan” in PubMed ( These articles
were identifi ed and annotated into 10 categories: (A) effi cacy studies, including
randomized double blind comparative studies, randomized single blind
comparative studies, and open trials; (B) dose tuning; (C) augmentation therapy;
(D) pharamcokinetic studies; (E) cognitive function; (F) prognosis; (G) side effects;
(H) pharmaco-epidemiology; (I) pharmaco-economics; (J) pharmaco-genetics.
Many Taiwan studies have offered empirical results of pharmacotherapy for
schizophrenia in Taiwan. Besides clozapine, which is superior in effi cacy, most
studies showed comparable effi cacy in treating schizophrenia among the different
antipsychotic drugs, but with different side effect profi les. Many studies on monitoring
and managing the side effects offered important references. The reports on
dose tuning, augmentation with pharmacokinetic interaction, combination therapy
or NMDA augmentation offered empirical evidence for clinical applications. The
pharmaco-genetic studies showed evidence of genetic markers to predict effi cacy
and side effects in our Taiwan patients, trying to achieve the goal of individualized
pharmacotherapy. But more studies are required to validate the results. The studies
on cognition, clinical outcomes, pharmaco-economics are still limited in number.
These studies have offered empirical results of pharmacotherapy for schizophrenia
in Taiwan, and will be the basis for the development of the Taiwan consensus of
pharmacological treatment for schizophrenia.
Key Word Antipsychotic drugs, schizophrenia, Taiwan
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