Schizophrenia and bipolar disorder are serious mental illnesses that can have a negative impact on a person’s life. People with these conditions often struggle to maintain an independent and fulfilling life, which is why so many of them require constant care. However, the right treatment can help reduce their symptoms and increase their overall quality of life.
In recent years, there has been a strong focus on new antipsychotic drugs for the treatment of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and other related clinical conditions. These drugs are known as atypical because they work differently from older versions. Their effectiveness has allowed them to become the first-line drug recommended by most doctors. But how exactly do they work? Let’s take a closer look…
What is Latuda?
Latuda is the brand name for the drug lurasidone, which is a type of atypical antipsychotic medication. It is used to treat the symptoms of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder. It is also used for the treatment of depression along with anxiety disorders in people who have a history of substance abuse.
When someone has schizophrenia, they often struggle with hallucinations, delusions, and other unusual thoughts and behaviors, including difficulties with social interactions.
Bipolar disorder causes extreme mood swings between periods of feeling extremely depressed and periods of feeling very high, irritable, and/or euphoric. Major depressive disorder is a type of depression that causes extreme feelings of sadness and loss of interest in activities that are usually enjoyable.
How does Latuda Work?
The exact way that lurasidone works is not fully understood, but researchers believe that it is most likely related to the way in which it influences serotonin and dopamine in the brain. Serotonin and dopamine are two neurotransmitters that are important for mood regulation and other functions. Generally speaking, atypical antipsychotics like lurasidone work by blocking dopamine receptors in the brain.
This can reduce the positive symptoms of schizophrenia like hallucinations and delusions. Atypical antipsychotics also help to regulate serotonin levels in the brain. People with depression often have lower serotonin levels than normal, so blocking dopamine receptors and increasing serotonin can help to improve their symptoms.
Benefits of Latuda
There are various benefits associated with lurasidone, including its ability to reduce the symptoms of schizophrenia, mania in bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder. Lurasidone has also been shown to be effective for the treatment of anxiety disorders in people who have a history of substance abuse.
In people with schizophrenia, lurasidone has been shown to reduce positive and negative symptoms of the disorder, including hallucinations, delusions, and cognitive function. In people with bipolar disorder, lurasidone has been shown to reduce the symptoms of both mania and depression. In people with major depressive disorder, lurasidone has been shown to reduce depressive symptoms.
Drawbacks of Latuda
One of the main drawbacks associated with lurasidone is that it has a high rate of side effects. These include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headache, insomnia, fatigue, and weight gain. Lurasidone may also have negative effects on a person’s liver and kidneys. Additionally, lurasidone has the risk of worsening substance abuse, including alcohol and opioid use. It may also have negative effects on a person’s cardiovascular health.
Some of the most common side effects of lurasidone include nausea, vomiting, dizziness, headache, insomnia, fatigue, and weight gain. Some people may also experience increased blood pressure, increased cholesterol, and/or an increased risk of liver damage or kidney failure.
Bottom Line: Latuda: The New Antipsychotic Drug for Schizophrenia & Bipolar Disorder
Overall, lurasidone is a promising new antipsychotic drug that has been shown to reduce the symptoms of schizophrenia, mania in bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder. It is most effective in people with moderate-to-severe symptoms who have previously not responded to other treatments. It is important to note, however, that lurasidone does have a high rate of side effects.
It is also important to note that lurasidone is not approved for use in children or adolescents younger than 18 years of age. For people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, or major depressive disorder who are currently not receiving treatment, lurasidone may be a good option that is worth discussing with a doctor.