Many patients don't reach target dose of atomoxetine

August 11, 2016

(HealthDay)—A considerable proportion of patients receiving atomoxetine (ATX), especially those receiving ATX monotherapy, do not reach the recommended dose of 80 mg/day (ATX ≥80), according to a study published online July 31 in CNS Neuroscience & Therapeutics.

David B. Clemow, Ph.D., from Lilly USA in Indianapolis, and colleagues conducted a retrospective observational cohort study involving adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In patients prescribed ATX monotherapy (mono; 36,076 patients) and ATX in combination with other ADHD medications (combo; 1,548 patients), the authors compared ATX length of therapy (LoT) among those who reached the recommended dose (ATX ≥80) versus those who did not (ATX <80).

The researchers found that at one-year follow-up, 45.0 and 77.9 percent of the patients in the mono and combo groups, respectively, reached the recommended dose. Over the course of a year, the total days of therapy were significantly higher for patients who filled at least one 80-mg prescription versus those who did not (P < 0.0001). Combo patients had longer ATX LoT, irrespective of whether they reached 80 mg/day ATX or not (P < 0.0001). For mono patients, LoT was 93.8 days longer for ATX ≥80 versus ATX <80.

"Ensuring adult ADHD patients are treated with ATX at a target dose of 80 mg/day is an important clinical consideration for maximizing patient days on therapy, which can be important for treatment optimization," the authors write.

The study was funded by Lilly, the manufacturer of atomoxetine

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