stats Making the Business of Life Easier

   Finance globeinvestor   Careers globecareers.workopolis Subscribe to The Globe
The Globe and Mail /
Home | Business | National | Int'l | Sports | Columnists | The Arts | Tech | Travel | TV | Wheels


  This site         Tips
  The Web Google


  Where to Find It

Breaking News

  Home Page

  Report on Business



Golf, sponsored by Mazda

Subscribe to The Globe

Print Edition

  Front Page

  Report on Business




  Arts & Entertainment



  Headline Index

 Other Sections


  Births & Deaths






  Facts & Arguments




  Real Estate










  Food & Dining




  Online Personals

  TV Listings/News

 Specials & Series

  All Reports...


  Where to Find It
 A quick guide to what's
 available on the site

  Web Advertisers
 An index of our





  Customer Service

  Help & Contact Us



 Web Site


  E-Mail Newsletters

  Free Headlines

  Help & Contact Us

  Make Us Home


  Press Room

  Privacy Policy



Search Results
for: Psychiatric drugs targeted
Document No. 1 of 1

Psychiatric drugs targeted
Researchers warn overmedication possible after finding medications linger in brain
Email this articlePrint this article
Wednesday, March 20, 2002 - Print Edition, Page A10

Patients taking drugs to treat psychiatric disorders including schizophrenia, depression and dementia may be taking too much medication, a study suggests.

A report published yesterday in the journal Molecular Psychiatry found that some antipsychotic medications linger in the brain longer than is indicated by blood samples.

The findings by a team of researchers affiliated with the University of Toronto raise questions about traditional prescribing procedures that are based on medication levels found in the blood.

"The drugs that were sometimes being prescribed twice a day, even three times a day, may be able to be given less frequently, based on these findings," said study co-author Dr. Gary Remington, who is director of the schizophrenia and continuing-care medication-assessment program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.

"It would mean that people could take their medication less frequently and still maintain the same response."

Using positron-emission tomography, or PET scans, the scientists tracked olanzapine and risperidone -- North America's most commonly used antipsychotic drugs -- in the brains of 10 healthy volunteers and five patients being treated for schizophrenia.

The researchers found that medication in a pill taken on a Monday could be detected in the brain on Friday, although there was no trace of the drug in the blood.

Beyond prescribing practices, the findings could have implications for drug development, with a focus on what's happening in the brain rather than in the blood, Dr. Remington said.

And the findings could lead to cost cuts for patients and health-care insurers if less medication is prescribed, he added.

The implications are far-reaching but are being viewed skeptically by some physicians, the researchers said.

"Historically we wag our fingers and tell people to take their medication every day and don't forget it," Dr. Remington said. "This is a kind of reverse of what we've been saying for many years."

Dr. Remington is among a group of researchers examining whether antipsychotic medications taken once every few days could be as effective as medications taken daily.

While preliminary results suggest it's possible to cut dosages, Dr. Remington said, it is too soon for patients to request that their medications be changed.

The research was financed in part by a grant from pharmaceutical company Eli Lilly Canada.

Return to Search Results Page
Sign up for our daily e-mail News Update!  
Email this article Print this article

7-Day Site Search

Breaking News

Today's Weather


Margaret Wente
America the good, the bad, and the ugly

Drew Fagan
It's sad but true: The American economic eagle is landing

Snarl-spangled banter


Globe Poll

The results of the B.C. treaty negotiations referendum show that a large majority support eliminating native tax exemptions and giving any aboriginal government status similar to that of a municipality. Do you agree?



What's New

The latest news, reviews and tips on improving your game

@ Play's new games page


Morning Smile

What's the difference between a good house guest and a politician? The good house guest knows when it's time to leave. -- Raymond St. Arnaud, Victoria, B.C.


Home | Business | National | Int'l | Sports | Columnists | The Arts | Tech | Travel | TV | Wheels

2002 Bell Globemedia Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.
Help & Contact Us | Back to the top of this page