The effect of age on lithium dosage requirements

Pharmacopsychiatry. 1984 Nov;17(6):199-201. doi: 10.1055/s-2007-1017438.


Analysis of more than 350 observations of patients who had been under lithium treatment for 6 months to 4 years showed a significant negative correlation between dosage requirements and age; old patients required less lithium than young patients to maintain a particular serum lithium concentration. The decline in dosage requirement with increasing age could be fully accounted for by the age-dependent fall in the glomerular filtration rate and lithium clearance. There was no age-dependent change in tablet compliance, and the duration of exposure to lithium did not influence the dosage requirement.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Bipolar Disorder / blood
  • Bipolar Disorder / drug therapy*
  • Creatinine / blood
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Humans
  • Lithium / blood
  • Lithium / therapeutic use*
  • Metabolic Clearance Rate
  • Middle Aged


  • Lithium
  • Creatinine