MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirty chronic schizophrenia patients were recruited for the study and their demographic data and medication dosage were noted. Symptom severity was scored on the Positive And Negative Syndrome scale for Schizophrenia (PANSS) and blood sampling done. Ten healthy Chinese males were recruited as controls. Phytohaemagglutinin-stimulated production of serum levels of IL-2 were measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay.
RESULTS: IL-2 levels (1327 +/- 596.2) of all 30 patients were significantly lower than that of the Chinese controls (2420 +/- 342.5). This effect was noted throughout the entire duration of the illness. Ethnic and age differences in IL-2 levels were not found. There was, however, a negative correlation with the duration of the illness and a positive correlation with the dosage of medication.
CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study of a population of mostly Chinese patients with schizophrenia replicate an important finding. Data such as this has not been reported previously on Asians of this racial group.
METHOD: All 2035 Asian (88% Chinese, 7% Malays and 5% Indonesians) psychiatric in-patients in the state psychiatric hospital in Singapore were surveyed for occurrence of oculogyric spasm (OGS) over a two-month period.
RESULTS: Thirty-four patients (1.7%) developed OGS (53% male and 47% female). All the 34 patients had been on maintenance antipsychotic drugs for more than five months. Eighteen patients had recurrent attacks. The mean chlorpromazine equivalent daily dose for those patients with recurrent OGS was 511 mg. This was significantly higher (P < 0.05) than the 277 mg daily dose received by those without recurrent OGS. Most (68%) of the attacks occurred between 1400-2000 h suggesting that OGS may have a diurnal variation.
CONCLUSIONS: OGS presenting as tardive dystonia may be due to a relative increase in cholinergic activity.