The Evidence for Antipsychotics

The evidence base for the use of antipsychotics to treat schizophrenia comes from research showing that the drugs are effective in treating acute symptoms (1), and that when the drugs are abruptly withdrawn, patients are at high risk of relapse (2). These studies, however, do not address whether continual long-term use leads to better overall outcomes.

1.  Phenothiazine Treatment in Acute Schizophrenia. Cole, J. Archives of General Psychiatry 10 (1964):246-61.

2. Neuroleptic Withdrawal in Schizophrenic Patients. Gilbert, P. Archives of General Psychiatry 52 (1995): 173-88. (Abstract only.)


Mad in America Documents

The evidence for antipsychotics

Antipsychotics and chronic illness

Antipsychotics and progressive brain dysfunction

Early death associated with antipsychotic drugs

Outcomes in the era of atypical antipsychotics

Modern experimental programs producing better outcomes

Timeline for antipsychotics





Mad in America hosts blogs by a diverse group of writers. These posts are designed to serve as a public forum for a discussion—broadly speaking—of psychiatry and its treatments. The opinions expressed are the writers’ own.


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