Psychiatric Quarterly

, Volume 85, Issue 3, pp 357–367 | Cite as

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

  • Aurigena Antunes de Araújo
  • Diego de Araújo Dantas
  • Gemma Galgani do Nascimento
  • Susana Barbosa Ribeiro
  • Katarina Melo Chaves
  • Vanessa de Lima Silva
  • Raimundo Fernandes de AraújoJr.
  • Dyego Leandro Bezerra de Souza
  • Caroline Addison Carvalho Xavier de Medeiros
Original Paper


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 χ2 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.


Schizophrenia Atypical antipsychotic Quality of life 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  • Aurigena Antunes de Araújo
    • 1
    • 4
    • 7
  • Diego de Araújo Dantas
    • 2
  • Gemma Galgani do Nascimento
    • 3
  • Susana Barbosa Ribeiro
    • 4
  • Katarina Melo Chaves
    • 4
  • Vanessa de Lima Silva
    • 5
  • Raimundo Fernandes de AraújoJr.
    • 6
  • Dyego Leandro Bezerra de Souza
    • 7
  • Caroline Addison Carvalho Xavier de Medeiros
    • 1
    • 8
  1. 1.Department of Biophysical and PharmacologyUniversidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN)NatalBrazil
  2. 2.Department of the Post Graduation Program in Health and Society/UERNUERNNatalBrazil
  3. 3.Department of NursingUERNMossoróBrazil
  4. 4.Post Graduation Program of Pharmaceutical ScienceUniversidade Federal do Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN)NatalBrazil
  5. 5.Department of Pharmaceutical ScienceUFRNNatalBrazil
  6. 6.Department of Morphology, Post Graduation Program in Functional and Structural Biology/Post Graduation Program Health ScienceUFRNNatalBrazil
  7. 7.Post Graduation Program Public HealthUFRNNatalBrazil
  8. 8.Post Graduation Program in Health and Society (UERN)MossoróBrazil

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