Objective: The aim of the study was to survey the frequency of tardive dyskinesia (TD) in patients with schizophrenia and its demographic and clinical correlates in selected Asian countries.
Method: A total of 6,761 hospitalized schizophrenia patients in nine Asian countries and territories were examined from 2001 to 2009. TD was evaluated as "present" or "absent" according to the clinical judgment of experienced psychiatrists. The patients' socio-demographic and clinical characteristics and the prescriptions of psychotropic drugs were recorded using a standardized protocol and data collection procedure.
Results: The frequency of TD in the whole sample was 5.0% with wide variations between countries (0 - 14.9%). Multiple logistic regression analysis showed that the following variables were independently associated with TD: study time, study site, older age, male gender, more severe negative and extrapyramidal symptoms and less anticholinergic drugs.
Conclusions: A generally low frequency of TD in Asian schizophrenia patients with inter-ethnic variations was recorded. It is unclear whether the low prevalence of TD compared with Western data is real or the result of it being insufficiently recognized.