The present study aimed to assess switch from immediate-release (IR) to extended-release (XR) Quetiapine in terms of efficacy, tolerability, compliance, and quality of life in a sample of patients with mood disorders. Thirty patients, 10 with major depressive disorder and 20 with bipolar disorder, with residual depressive symptoms, who had switched from Quetiapine IR (mean 365 mg/day) to XR (mean 373 mg/day), were recruited and evaluated using different psychometric scales, administered at T0 (switch), T1, and T2 (1 and 6 weeks after the switch, respectively). A significant reduction from T0 to T2 of the total scores on the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (t=2.15; P=0.04), Hamilton Anxiety Scale (t=3.04; P=0.006), and Clinical Global Impression-Severity Item (t=2.8; P=0.01) was found. No differences were found in terms of compliance and quality of life. The switch was well tolerated by 2/3 of patients. Most reported side effects were early/central insomnia with day drowsiness (16.7%), increased appetite and weight (8.4%), mild asthenia (4.2%), and constipation (4.2%), which, in two cases, led to switch interruption. Strategies to relieve side effects, including gradual cross-switch, improved switch feasibility. Switch from Quetiapine IR to XR seems to be associated with clinical improvement in major depressives with residual symptoms, although some patients may report side effects because of the different pharmacokinetics.
Department of Mental Health, University of Milan, Fondazione IRCCS Cà Granda, Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Milan, Italy
Correspondence to Bernardo Dell’Osso, MD, Department of Psychiatry, University of Milan, Fondazione IRCCS Cà Granda, Ospedale Maggiore Policlinico, Via Francesco Sforza 35, 20122 Milan, Italy Tel: +39 2 55035994; fax: +39 2 50320310; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Received May 2, 2012
Accepted August 5, 2012