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Well-tolerated and effective therapies for bipolar mania are required.
To evaluate the efficacy and tolerability of aripiprazole as acute and maintenance of effect therapy in patients with bipolar I disorder experiencing manic or mixed episodes.
Patients were randomised to double-blind aripiprazole (15 or 30 mg/day; n=167) placebo (n=153) or haloperidol (5–15 mg/day, n=165) for 3 weeks (trial registration NCT00097266). Aripiprazole- and haloperidol-treated patients remained on masked treatment for 9 additional weeks.
Mean change in Young Mania Rating Scale Total score (primary end-point) at week 3 was significantly greater with aripiprazole (–12.0; P<0.05) and haloperidol (–12.8; P<0.01) than with placebo (–9.7). Improvements were maintained to week 12 for aripiprazole (–17.2) and haloperidol (–17.8). Aripiprazole was well tolerated. Extrapyramidal adverse events were more frequent with haloperidol than aripiprazole (53.3% v. 23.5%).
Clinical improvements with aripiprazole were sustained to week 12. Aripiprazole was generally well tolerated.
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