Adjunctive risperidone in the treatment of chronic combat-related posttraumatic stress disorder

George Bartzokis, Po H. Lu, Jana Turner, Jim Mintz, C. Scott Saunders

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

145 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: The efficacy and safety of risperidone was evaluated in veteran patients with chronic combat-related posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) who were referred to a residential treatment program. Methods: Seventy-three subjects volunteered to participate in this double-blind, placebo-controlled study, which comprised of a 5 week residential program followed by a 3-month outpatient follow-up. Risperidone was added to a stable psychotropic medication regimen in 92% of subjects. Primary outcome measures were the Clinician-Administered PTSD scale (CAPS-total) and its three subscales; B (Re-experiencing), C (Avoidance) and D (Arousal). Secondary outcome measures were the Hamilton Anxiety (HAM-A) and Depression (HAM-D) scales, and the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale, Positive Subscale (PANSS-P). Results: Sixty-five subjects were randomized and 48 completed the 4-month study. Significantly greater improvement in symptoms was observed in subjects receiving risperidone compared to placebo on the CAPS-total and CAPS-D subscale scores and also on HAM-A and PANSS-P. Numerically greater improvements in all the remaining measures were noted with risperidone, but the differences did not reach statistical significance. Risperidone was well tolerated. Conclusions: These results suggest that adjunctive risperidone improved a broad range of psychiatric symptoms in patients with chronic combat-related PTSD. The data support the concept that atypical antipsychotic medications may have a wider therapeutic spectrum that goes beyond the treatment of psychosis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)474-479
Number of pages6
JournalBiological Psychiatry
Volume57
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2005
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Antipsychotic
  • Atypical
  • Chronic
  • Combat
  • PTSD
  • Posttraumatic stress disorder
  • Risperidone

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry

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