Lithium Treatment for Bipolar Disorder Reduces the Risk of Rehospitalization

Researchers reveal that lithium treatment for patients suffering from bipolar disorder can lower the risk of rehospitalization, according to a study conducted on February 28, 2018.

Depression and elevated mood are the characteristics of bipolar disorder and treatment for this can be done by mood stabilizing or by using antipsychotic drugs. One of the most effective mood stabilizer is lithium, however, the long-term effects of different drugs used in the treatment of bipolar disorder has been compared by very few studies.

18,000 patients were involved in the study to compare the risk of rehospitalization. After a follow-up of over seven years, lowest risk of rehospitalization was observed in the treatment which used lithium. Compared to no treatment, 30 percent reduction in risk was observed in lithium treatment. When patients were treated using the long-acting injections instead of the oral medicines, a 30 percent lower risk of re-admission was observed in the patients. Only a 7 percent reduction in risk was observed by using quetiapine, which is an antipsychotic drug.

In recent years, lithium is the least preferred medicine for the treatment of bipolar disorder. However, this study shows that primary treatment for bipolar disorder must be by using lithium. Patients who find lithium as unsuitable for them, can go for long-acting injections, which are safer and effective as well. For this study, funding has been received by the authors from few pharmaceutical companies. The Finnish Ministry of Social Affairs and Health funded this research.

This method of using lithium for the treatment of bipolar disorder will increase the growth of anti-psychotic drugs market, as elaborated in the anti-psychotic drugs market report published by Coherent Market Insights.

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