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Clozapine prescribing practice and trends in Qatar: First national observational study

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journal contribution
submitted on 2023-03-15, 08:00 and posted on 2023-03-16, 06:18 authored by Ovais Wadoo, Javed Latoo, Majid Alabdulla, Yassin Eltorki, Sadaf Riaz, Mustafa Abdul Karim, Mohammed Abu‐Hafizah, Shuja Reagu



Clozapine is the gold standard in the management of treatment-resistant schizophrenia. Despite its clinically proven efficacy clozapine utilization is variable globally and published evidence is suggestive of its underutilization. Research from the Arab region on clozapine utilization is limited. The aim of our descriptive observational study was to evaluate the prescribing practice of clozapine and its sociodemographic and clinical corelates in the State of Qatar.


The study is a retrospective case-note review of all patients maintained on clozapine, in the calendar year 2020. Data were collected on sociodemographic characteristics of the patients; antipsychotic trials before initiating clozapine; and clinical characteristics of the patients, including their diagnoses leading to prescription of clozapine, duration of illness, psychiatric hospitalizations, and co-morbidities.


During the study period, 100 patients were maintained on clozapine. Patients were mostly Qatari and non-Qatari Arab males. Prescription rates were significantly different for Qatari patients when compared to non-Qatari patients. Most patients had a chronic illness with the age of onset of illness in early adulthood and were diagnosed with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder. The mean daily dose of clozapine was 325 mg. Eighty percent of the patients received two or more antipsychotic trials before initiating clozapine. Sixty-eight percent of the patients had more than two antipsychotic trials before initiating Clozapine. One third of patients had no history of psychiatric hospitalizations, and one quarter had five or more previous psychiatric hospitalizations. Of the psychiatric comorbidities, mood and substance use disorders were common. Of medical comorbidities, endocrine and metabolic disorders were common.


Despite apparent underutilization, the Clozapine prescribing rates in Qatar are comparable to countries with plasma monitoring systems when framed within Qatar's unique demographic context. However, there still is a significant delay in Clozapine initiation despite its clinical superiority.

Other Information

Published in: Brain and Behavior
See article on publisher's website:



  • English



Publication Year

  • 2022

Institution affiliated with

  • Hamad Medical Corporation
  • Qatar University
  • Weill Cornell Medical College in Qatar

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