Research Roundup

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Debbie Rigby rounds up the latest in research news 

Safety, tolerability and efficacy of palmitoylethanolamide for symptoms of knee osteoarthritis

This small study (n=111) assessed the safety, tolerability and efficacy of palmitoylethanolamide (PEA) when dosed at 300 mg and 600 mg per day on symptoms of knee osteoarthritis. The results showed significant reductions in pain, stiffness and function scores, as well as a reduction in anxiety. The authors concluded that palmitoylethanolamide may be a novel treatment for attenuating pain and reducing other associated symptoms of knee osteoarthritis.

Inflammopharmacology 2019;27(3):475-85.

Stopping and switching antipsychotic drugs

Switching from one antipsychotic to another is frequently indicated due to an inadequate treatment response or unacceptable adverse effects. Stopping antipsychotics should occur slowly under close medical observation. Long-term antipsychotic use can have serious consequences including tardive dyskinesia, weight gain, metabolic syndrome, diabetes and cardiovascular complications. Withdrawal syndromes include cholinergic and dopaminergic syndromes and rebound psychosis.

Aust Prescr 2019;42:152–7.

Antipsychotic switching tool

Venous thromboembolism: current management

Anticoagulation is indicated in most cases of venous thromboembolism. Monotherapy with rivaroxaban or apixaban is the preferred option for most adults with acute venous thromboembolism. There are no recommended dose reductions for rivaroxaban or apixaban in venous thromboembolism, unlike for atrial fibrillation. The initial duration of anticoagulation is usually three months.

Aust Prescr 2019;42:123-6.


Amiodarone in the aged

Amiodarone is a highly effective antiarrhythmic drug, but can have serious adverse effects, particularly in older patients. Consider potential drug interactions when other drugs are prescribed with amiodarone. The effects and toxicities of amiodarone may persist weeks after it is stopped. Amiodarone can have adverse effects in multiple organ systems including the lungs, heart, liver, thyroid, gut, skin, nerves and eyes.

Aust Prescr 2019;42:158–62



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