This meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) evaluated the efficacy and safety of adding aripiprazole to other antipsychotics in schizophrenia. A systematic computer search identified 55 RCTs including 4457 patients who were randomized to aripiprazole (14.0 ± 7.0 mg/d) versus placebo (18 RCTs) or open antipsychotic treatment (37 RCTs). Aripiprazole significantly outperformed the comparison interventions based on psychiatric scales: (1) total score in 43 RCTs (N = 3351) with a standardized mean difference (SMD) of -0.48 (95% confidence interval [CI], -0.68 to -0.28; P < 0.00001; I2 = 88%), (2) negative symptom score in 30 RCTs (N = 2294) with an SMD of -0.61(95% CI, -0.91 to -0.31; P < 0.00001; I2 = 91%), and (3) general psychopathology score in 13 RCTs (N = 1138) with a weighted mean difference (WMD) of -4.02 (95% CI, -7.23 to -0.81; P = 0.01; I2 = 99%), but not in positive symptoms in 29 RCTs (N = 2223) with a SMD of -0.01 (95% CI, 0.26 to 0.25; P = 0.95; I2 = 88%). Differences in total score based on psychiatric scales may be explained by the use of an antipsychotic for comparison rather than placebo in 31 RCTs with a nonblind design. Aripiprazole outperformed the comparison interventions for body weight in 9 RCTs (N = 505) with a WMD of -5.08 kg (95% CI, -7.14 to -3.02; P < 0.00001; I2 = 35%) and for body mass index (BMI) in 14 RCTs (N = 809) with a WMD of -1.78 (CI: -2.25 to -1.31; P < 0.00001; I2 = 54%). The BMI meta-regression analysis indicated aripiprazole's association with lower BMI was stronger in females. Adjunctive aripiprazole appears safe but better RCTs are needed to demonstrate efficacy. Chinese journals and scientific societies should encourage the publication of high-quality RCTs and require registration in a centralized Chinese database.
|Number of pages||9|
|Journal||Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology|
|State||Published - Dec 1 2016|
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2016 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.
- negative symptoms
- weight gain
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health
- Pharmacology (medical)