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16-04-2012 | Mental health | Article

Metabolic syndrome prevalent in Indian schizophrenia patients


Free abstract

MedWire News: Results from an Indian study suggest that nearly half of patients with schizophrenia meet criteria for the metabolic syndrome, with increased waist circumference being the most common component.

"Prevalence rate of metabolic syndrome in schizophrenia varies from 9% to 68% and is reported to be considerably more than that found among healthy controls and [the] general population," write Sandeep Grover (Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh) and team in Psychiatry Research.

But they add: "Previous studies from India that have evaluated the prevalence of metabolic syndrome in patients with schizophrenia have been limited by small sample size."

To investigate further, the team studied 227 adult patients with schizophrenia who were attending a multi-specialty tertiary-care hospital in northern India. The participants were aged a mean of 34.7 years, had a mean illness duration of 95.7 months, and had been receiving antipsychotic treatment for at least 3 months.

All of the participants were assessed for the metabolic syndrome using both International Diabetes Federation (IDF) and modified National Cholesterol Education Program Adult Treatment Panel (NCEP ATP)-III criteria.

In total, 99 (43.6%) patients met IDF criteria and 101 (44.5%) fulfilled NCEP ATP-III criteria for presence of the metabolic syndrome. There was significant correlation between the two criteria sets, the researchers note.

Overall, the metabolic syndrome was significantly more common in women than men, at 52.4% versus 37.7%. The most common component of the metabolic syndrome was increased waist circumference (defined as >90 cm for men and >80 cm for women), at 64.8%, followed by low levels of high-density lipoprotein (defined as <40 mg/dL for men and <50 mg/dL for women), at 47.6%. The least common component was increased fasting blood glucose levels, at 15.9%.

Logistic regression analysis showed that factors significantly associated with presence of the metabolic syndrome were age over 35 years (odds ratio [OR]=3.37), female gender (OR=1.81), urban locality (OR=2.08), being employed (OR=2.12), and a body mass index greater than 25 kg/m2 (OR=5.64).

Grover and team conclude: "The present study reveals that about 44% of patients with schizophrenia have metabolic syndrome, with increasing age and female gender as significant demographic predictors."

They add: "These findings imply that body mass index along with waist circumference can be useful in monitoring the development of possible metabolic syndrome [in schizophrenia patients]."

MedWire ( is an independent clinical news service provided by Springer Healthcare Limited. © Springer Healthcare Ltd; 2012

By Mark Cowen

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