n African Journal of Psychiatry - Poly-pharmacy in psychiatry : a debatable contemporary practice? Not much evidence : letter to the editor

Volume 14, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 1994-8220



Poly-pharmacy involves the concomitant administration of two or more drugs in a single patient. Despite extensive research and recommendations as to the optimal prescription of drugs, poly-pharmacy is still widely prevalent in clinical practice throughout the world. The study of this phenomenon in psychiatry is inherently complex. There is enough literature in psychiatry that suggests that monotherapy permits documenting patient's response to an adequate trial of each medication, helping to reduce the complexity of the medication regimen, reducing the risk of adverse events, and making it easier to assess and manage future symptom exacerbations. On the other hand, whilst poly-pharmacy is common it might appear an irrational and debatable contemporary practice having its own advantages and disadvantages. There should be no doubt that a powerful trend toward poly-pharmacy exists.

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