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23-09-2010 | Mental health | Article

Japanese schizophrenia patients at increased risk for metabolic syndrome


Free abstract

MedWire News: Japanese patients with schizophrenia are at increased risk for the metabolic syndrome, reflecting a similar association in Western patients with the psychotic disorder, study results show.

Previous research conducted among mainly Western populations has revealed a high prevalence of the metabolic syndrome among schizophrenia patients, at between 25% and 45%, explain Norio Sugawara (Hirosaki-Aiseikai Hospital, Hirosaki City) and colleagues.

However, they add that less is known about metabolic syndrome prevalence among Asian patients with schizophrenia.

To investigate further, the team studied 1186 Japanese patients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder who were aged an average of 54.8 years. A control group of 886 mentally healthy volunteers who participated in the Iwaki Health Promotion Project 2008 were also included in the study.

Prevalence of the metabolic syndrome among the participants was assessed using criteria from the National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel III adapted for Asians (ATP III-A), the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) for Japanese populations, and the Japan Society for the Study of Obesity (JASSO).

The researchers found that the prevalence of metabolic syndrome among the schizophrenia patients was 27.5%, 25.4%, and 17.9% using the ATP III-A, the IDF, and the JASSO criteria, respectively.

In controls, metabolic syndrome prevalence was 14.1%, 10.3%, and 8.1% using these respective definitions.

After accounting for age and other factors, the researchers found that men with schizophrenia were 1.99, 2.88, and 1.65 times more likely to have the metabolic syndrome than men without the disorder, based on ATP III-A, IDF, and JASSO criteria, respectively.

Among women, patients with schizophrenia were, respectively 2.13, 2.58, and 2.91 times more likely to have the metabolic syndrome than mentally healthy women.

Sugawara and team conclude in the journal Schizophrenia Research: "This study has shown that the prevalence of the metabolic syndrome in Japanese patients with schizophrenic and schizoaffective disorders… was considerably higher than in the reference general populations.

"Therefore, metabolic abnormalities in schizophrenic patients should be monitored carefully and treated in an appropriate manner."

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Current Medicine Group, a trading division of Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2010

By Mark Cowen

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