Discontinuation of Chemotherapy for Chronic Schizophrenics

Discontinuation of Chemotherapy for Chronic Schizophrenics. Prien, R. Hospital and Community Psychiatry, 22 (1971), 20-23.

In this NIMH study, the earlier finding that relapse rates rose in correlation with neuroleptic dosage was confirmed. Only 2 of 30 patients who were on placebo at the start of the study relapsed during the next 24 weeks (7%). Twenty-three percent of the 99 patients who were on under 300 mg. of chlorpromazine at the start of the study relapsed following drug withdrawal.  Fifty-two percent of the 91 patients who were on 300 to 500 mg. of chlorpromazine at the start of the study relapsed following drug withdrawal, and sixty-five percent of the 81 patients who were on more than 500 mg. of chlorpromazine at the start of the study relapsed following drug withdrawal. The researchers concluded: “Relapse was found to be significantly related to the dose of the tranquilizing medication the patient was receiving before he was put on placebo–the higher the dose, the greater the probability of relapse.” (See page 22, 23 of Mad In America)

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