Effective management strategies for the negative symptoms of schizophrenia remain an unmet need, and data on the use of antipsychotics in this population are scarce, particularly in Chinese patients. Therefore, we investigated amisulpride for the treatment of Chinese patients with predominantly negative symptoms of schizophrenia.
This post hoc subanalysis of the prospective Effectiveness and Safety of Amisulpride in Chinese Patients with Schizophrenia (ESCAPE) study included adult Chinese patients with an International Classification of Diseases-10 diagnosis of schizophrenia and predominantly negative symptoms, who received amisulpride for 8 weeks. Effectiveness outcomes included ≥50% decrease in Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS) negative score, and a reduction in PANSS negative symptom score and Clinical Global Impression Severity Scale (CGI-S). The study was registered at ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT01795183).
In total, 26 patients were included in the analysis. A ≥50% decrease in PANSS negative score from baseline to week 8 was achieved by 34.6% of patients. From baseline to week 8, the mean PANSS negative symptom score decreased by 45.2% (31.9 to 20.7) and CGI-S decreased 1.9 points (5.2 to 3.3). The mean week 8 dose of amisulpride was lower for patients who achieved a ≥50% decrease in PANSS negative score at week 8 versus those who did not (481.2 vs 704.1 mg/day). The most common treatment-related adverse events included blood prolactin increase (19.2%) and extrapyramidal disorder (19.2%). Weight gain was reported by one patient.
Amisulpride effectively reduced PANSS negative symptom score and CGI-S for Chinese patients with predominantly negative symptoms of schizophrenia. No unexpected adverse events were reported.