Preliminary evidence of improvement of depressive symptoms but not impulsivity in cluster B personality disorder patients treated with quetiapine: an open label trial

S Roepke, A Merkl, A Dams, A Ziegenhorn, I G Anghelescu, I Heuser, C H Lammers
Pharmacopsychiatry 2008, 41 (5): 176-81

INTRODUCTION: Atypical antipsychotics might become a new treatment option for patients with an impaired impulse regulation as seen in cluster B personality disorders (PD). The aim of the present study is to investigate the efficacy and tolerability of quetiapine in patients with cluster B PD.

METHODS: Fifteen in-patients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of borderline, histrionic, or narcissistic PD were treated for 8 weeks with quetiapine at a dose of 400 mg/day in an open-label fashion. Effects on impulsivity (Barratt Impulsiveness Scale, BIS), depressive symptoms (Hamilton Depression Scale, HAMD, and Beck Depression Inventory, BDI) and side effects (Dosage Record and Treatment Emergent Symptom Scale, DOTES) were assessed.

RESULTS: Twelve patients completed the study. No positive effect on impulsivity (BIS) was found, but a significant improvement on depression scores (HAM-D and BDI) was noted. Adverse effects that might have been due to study medication were mainly anticholinergic and mild-to-moderate.

DISCUSSION: The data of our preliminary open-label study do not argue for a general recommendation of quetiapine for the treatment of impulsivity in cluster B PD, but indicate positive effects on depressive symptoms.


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