Antipsychotics for Dementia: Not Justified and Risky

Kermit Cole
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In a study of antipsychotics used to treat 75,445 patients in nursing homes in the United States, researchers from Harvard Medical School, Columbia and Rutgers found that “their use cannot be justified as evidence based, and there are clear data confirming their associated risk.” The results were published yesterday in the British Medical Journal. The study’s data regarding the relative risks and efficacy of medications are similar to those of a study of 33,604 outpatients published in the American Journal of Psychiatry (posted on MIA last month).
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Kermit Cole
Kermit Cole, MFT, founding editor of Mad in America, works in Santa Fe, New Mexico as a couples and family therapist. Inspired by Open Dialogue, he works as part of a team and consults with couples and families that have members identified as patients. His work in residential treatment — largely with severely traumatized and/or "psychotic" clients — led to an appreciation of the power and beauty of systemic philosophy and practice, as the alternative to the prevailing focus on individual pathology. A former film-maker, he has undergraduate and master's degrees in psychology from Harvard University, as well as an MFT degree from the Council for Relationships in Philadelphia. He is a doctoral candidate with the Taos Institute and the Free University of Brussels. You can reach him at [email protected]