Korean J Psychopharmacol.  2007 Sep;18(5):308-317.

Recent 5-Year Trends of Prescription Patterns in Inpatients with Bipolar Disorder in Four Hospitals

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Gwangju, Korea. chs0225@yumc.yonsei.ac.kr
  • 2Institute of Behavioral Science in Medicine, Yonsei University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.
  • 3Department of Psychiatry, Ilsan Hospital, National Health Insurance Corporation, Goyang, Korea.
  • 4Department of Psychiatry, Hallym University College of Medicine, Anyang, Korea.


The aim of this study was to monitor changes of prescription patterns for bipolar disorder in clinical settings during the last five years in four psychiatric treatment centers.
A retrospective chart review of data of 601 patients with bipolar disorder was performed between January 2001 and December 2005 from four psychiatric centers in Seoul and GyeongGi-Do. Data on demograpnic variables, clinical characteristics, and the types and dosages of mood stabilizers and antipsychotics, and the patterns of prescriptions over the five-year period were analyzed.
The use of valproate has increased, whereas the percentage of lithium use has decreased. The combined prescription of valproate and lithium remained constant at 12% over the five-year period. The prescription of newer-class of mood stabilizers such as lamotrigine and topiramate was few. Most of the patients in our study were on more than two psychotropic agents, with the most common discharge medication being a combination of a mood stabilizer and an antipsychotic (81.9%). The use of atypical antipsychotics has increased its share from 71.4% in 2001 to 92.3% in 2005. Among the atypical antipsychotics, Quetiapine use showed the most rapid increase since year 2001 and ranked as the most frequenctly used antipsychotics for bipolar disorder in 2005 (38.5% of antipsychotics). Especially, in those without psychotic features, quetiapine was the most frequently used antipsychotics (51.2% in 2005). In those with psychotic features, risperidone (39.1%) was more frequently used than quetiapine (28.3%).
The present study showed that significant changes have occurred in the prescription patterns of mood stabilizers and antipsychotics and the rate of combination therapy for patients with bipolar disorder in the last five years. These results seem to reflect the introduction of new agents and the accumulating evidencebased data for the treatment of bipolar disorder, and will provide the useful information to clinicians for the establishment of better treatment guidelines for patients with bipolar disorder.


Bipolar disorder; Prescription pattern; Mood stabilizer; Antipsychotics
Full Text Links
  • KJP
export Copy
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
Similar articles
Copyright © 2021 by Korean Association of Medical Journal Editors. All rights reserved.     E-mail: koreamed@kamje.or.kr