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Peripheral oedema in patients taking olanzapine

Ng, Bernardoa; Postlethwaite, Alejandraa; Rollnik, Jensc

International Clinical Psychopharmacology: January 2003 - Volume 18 - Issue 1 - p 57-59
Case Reports

Premarketing trials of olanzapine reported an incidence of peripheral oedema of 3%. Outpatients, who were actively receiving treatment with olanzapine, were evaluated for peripheral oedema. Twenty-eight (57%) out of 49 subjects exhibited oedema, including five (10.2%) to a severe degree. There were no significant differences regarding gender, time/dose on olanzapine, concomitant diagnoses or psychotropic medication. There was a tendency (P < 0.10) for older age and greater frequency of thyroid abnormalities in those individuals with oedema. In the oedema group, there was a positive correlation (P < 0.05) between age and severity. Our finding, far from demonstrating that olanzapine causes oedema at this frequency, suggests that there maybe patients who are vulnerable to developing this side-effect.

aUCSD Department of Psychiatry, Sun Valley Behavioral Medical Center, Irvine, California

bDepartment of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts

cDepartment of Neurology and Clinical Neurophysiology, Medical School of Hannover, Germany

Correspondence and requests for reprints to Bernardo Ng, 300 South Imperial Avenue, Suite 9, El Centro, CA 92243, USA.

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Received 13 June 2002 Accepted 29 October 2002

© 2003 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.