Schizophrenia is a serious mental disorder characterized by abnormal interpretation of reality. Several antipsychotic drugs, like aripiprazole and paliperidone, are prescribed to schizophrenic patients. However, several clinicians and researchers assume that schizophrenic patients respond differently to antipsychotic drugs. This study aims to examine the overall variation in treatment response in patients with schizophrenia.

This study is meta-analyses of double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trials of adults with schizophrenia who were prescribed licensed antipsychotic drugs. The data sources for the study included MEDLINE/PubMed, PsycINFO, Cochrane Schizophrenia, BIOSIS Previews,, WHO Registry, and Cochrane CENTRAL. The primary outcome of the study was the overall variability ration of treatment to control across the randomized controlled trials.

Ther researchers simulated one randomized controlled trial, including 90 patients with schizophrenia. The patients were randomized to either antipsychotic treatment or the control group. The simulated data was utilized to illustrate different elements of variation in randomized controlled trials. The findings suggested that the variability was slightly lower in the antipsychotic treatment group as compared with the control group (variability ratio 0.97).

The research concluded that there was no concrete evidence that confirmed that treatment with antipsychotic drugs increased the outcome variance. In fact, the variance was found to be lower in the treatment group.