OBJECTIVE: To determine the preferred antipsychotic drug of mental health professionals.
MATERIAL AND METHODS: This cross-sectional survey was conducted among mental healthcare
professionals of 25 public/private healthcare facilities of Sindh and Blochistan provinces
form April 2007 to March 2008. After approval from ethical committee of Dow University of
Health Sciences mental health professionals (trainees, consultants with experience only and
consultant with postgraduate qualification) present on the day of visit to a facility were approached
and asked to fill a semi-structured questionnaire to determine the preferred antipsychotic
for patient as well as for themselves if they got ill and the factors they consider while
choosing that antipsychotic. Descriptive analysis of the data was performed by SPSS v. 14.
RESULTS: One-hundred five mental health professionals were divided in 3 groups i.e. trainees
(29), experienced doctors (24) and consultants psychiatrists (52). They have almost equal experience
of using typical (48%) and atypical (49%) antipsychotic, but when asked to chose antipsychotic
for themselves, atypical (81%) were preferred over typical (14%) antipsychotic with
Risperidone as the most common choice (55%) followed by quetiapine, olanzapine and clozapine.
Regarding the factors influencing prescription, efficacy and safety were most considered
factor while choosing antipsychotic for themselves as compare to efficacy and cost while experiencing
prescription for patients.
CONCLUSION: Clinical approach varies while prescribing anti-psychotic drug for the patients
and for themselves between typical and atypical. Efficacy and safety were considered while
choosing for themselves, whereas efficacy and cost while prescribing for patients.
Key words: Preference, anti-psychotic, mental health professionals, typical, atypical.