, Volume 85, Issue 3, pp 357-367
Date: 01 May 2014

Quality of Life in Patients with Schizophrenia: The Impact of Socio-economic Factors and Adverse Effects of Atypical Antipsychotics Drugs

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Abstract

This cross-sectional study compared the effects of treatment with atypical antipsychotic drugs on quality of life (QoL) and side effects in 218 patients with schizophrenia attending the ambulatory services of psychiatric in Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil. Socio-economic variables were compared. The five-dimension EuroQoL (EQ-5D) was used to evaluate QoL, and side effects were assessed using the Udvalg for Kliniske Undersøgelser (UKU) Side Effect Rating Scale and the Simpson–Angus Scale. Data were analysed using the χ 2 test and Student’s t test, with a significance level of 5 %. Average monthly household incomes in the medication groups were 1.1–2.1 minimum wages ($339–$678). UKU Scale scores showed significant differences in side effects, mainly, clozapine, quetiapine and ziprasidone (p < 0.05). EQ-5D scores showed that all drugs except olanzapine significantly impacted mobility (p < 0.05), and proportions of individuals reporting problems in other dimensions were high: 63.6 % of clozapine users reported mobility problems, 63.7 and 56.3 % of clozapine and ziprasidone users, respectively, had difficulties with usual activities, 68.8 and 54.5 % of ziprasidone and clozapine users, respectively, experienced pain and/or discomfort, and 72.8 % of clozapine users reported anxiety and/or depression. Psychiatric, neurological, and autonomous adverse effects, as well as other side effects, were prevalent in users of atypical antipsychotic drugs, especially clozapine and ziprasidone. Olanzapine had the least side effects. QoL was impacted by side effects and economic conditions in all groups. Thus, the effects of these antipsychotic agents appear to have been masked by aggravating social and economic situations.

Aurigena Antunes de Araújo and Diego de Araújo Dantas have showed the same importance for carrying out the work.