Control medication for psychological disorders might cause obesity


(Para leer la versión en español ir a Noticias Relacionadas).
Washington, D.C. (ConcienciaNews) – According to a recent study published in the scientific journal JAMA, some medications for controlling psychological disorders in young people may make them put on extra pounds. This also includes possible changes in levels of cholesterol, triglycerides, etc.

The study concerns antipsychotic medications (second-generation) provided to young people with bipolar disorder and psychotic disorder, among other mental disorders.

In the study, the authors state that “increasingly, the cardiometabolic effects of second-generation antipsychotic medications have raised concern. Cardiometabolic adverse effects, such as age-inappropriate weight gain, obesity, hypertension, and lipid and glucose abnormalities, are particularly problematic during development because they predict adult obesity, the metabolic syndrome, cardiovascular morbidity, and malignancy.”

The metabolic syndrome is a group of conditions that endanger the development of heart disease and diabetes, including high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high blood triglyceride levels, low blood HDL levels and excess fat around the waist, among others.

According to the study, the cardiac effects have not yet been investigated among children and adolescents who have received the medications.

To reach these conclusions, Christoph U. Correll, a physician and researcher at The Feinstein Institute for Medical Research in New York, analyzed the changes in 272 patients between the ages of 4 and 19 who had never received any antipsychotic medications, but had some kind of psychological disorder. Some were treated for 12 weeks with these drugs and others were not.

After 10.8 weeks of treatment, the percentage of weight gain was 18.7 pounds, but varied with the medication. “Each medication was significantly associated with the increase in fat and weight,” says the author, who emphasized that 10 to 36 percent of patients became overweight or obese in just 11 weeks.

Authors are concerned about the results, because they reached the conclusion that body fat and weight are associated with metabolic syndrome and antipsychotics in adulthood. “Abnormal childhood weight and metabolic status adversely affect adult cardiovascular outcomes.”

Researchers recommend monitoring changes that may occur in young people during the first three months of treatment. They also say that the benefits of these medications must be balanced to prevent cardiometabolic risks.