Switching Antipsychotics to Ameliorate Weight Gain
February 23, 2021   

Atypical antipsychotics are often associated with detrimental metabolic changes that may influence treatment adherence, quality of life, and mortality. In this meta-analysis, the authors investigated the benefits of switching from one antipsychotic to another with less propensity for metabolic changes. Switching from another antipsychotic to either aripiprazole or ziprasidone was associated with weight reduction and improvement in other metabolic parameters whereas switching to olanzapine or clozapine was associated with weight gain and worsened metabolic outcomes. In contrast, switching to amisulpride, paliperidone, risperidone, quetiapine, or lurasidone had no effect on weight, with the exception of switching from olanzapine to lurasidone, which was associated with weight loss (Figure). These data suggest that, in addition to lifestyle changes and/or augmentation with a weight loss agent such as metformin, switching from another antipsychotic to ziprasidone or aripiprazole (and perhaps from olanzapine to lurasidone) may ameliorate the metabolic effects often seen in patients with psychiatric issues.

Figure. Metabolic Consequences of Switching to Another Antipsychotic
FGA: first generation (conventional) antipsychotic); SGA: second generation (atypical) antipsychotic


Siskind D et al. Schizophr Bull 2021; Epub ahead of print. Abstract

     Additional Resources:

2021 NEI Synapse: Virtual Half-Day
Chewing the Fat: Metabolic Issues in Mental Illness
CME credits: 2.0 | Date: August 28, 2021
Video Snippet
Practical Management of Metabolic Concerns in Your Patients
CME credit: 0.25 | Expires: March 31, 2023
Encore Presentation
Addressing the Intolerable: Practical Strategies to Mitigate Psychotropic Side Effects
CME credit: 1.0 | Expires: November 8, 2023
NEI Podcast
Episode 78 - (CME) Help on the Horizon: Novel Treatments in Schizophrenia

CME credit: 0.75 | Expires: July 23, 2023
Encore Presentation
Weighing Metabolic Factors in Mental Illness
CME credit: 0.75 | Expires: April 28, 2022