Objective: To determine if quetiapine, an atypical antipsychotic agent approved for the treatment of schizophrenia, is effective in the treatment of bipolar disorder.
Materials and Methods: A retrospective chart review identified six patients with DSM-IV bipolar disorder, type I, who received open uncontrolled treatment with quetiapine in the setting of nonresponse or intolerance to traditional mood-stabilizing treatments. Treatment response was based on moderate to marked improvement on the Clinical Global Impression-Bipolar Disorder (CGI-BP) scale.
Results: Two of six patients showed evidence of response. The main side effect noted was sedation.
Conclusions: Quetiapine may be a useful treatment for some patients with treatment-resistant bipolar disorder. Further studies are needed to assess quetiapine's effect more rigorously.