Antipsychotics Aren’t Helpful to Children


Researchers from London, writing in European Psychiatry, reviewed “all RCTs involving children and young people with a diagnosis of childhood onset schizophrenia comparing any antipsychotic drug with another antipsychotic or placebo.” They found that “there is little conclusive evidence regarding the effects of antipsychotic medication for those with early onset schizophrenia. Some benefits were identified in using the atypical antipsychotic clozapine but the benefits were offset by an increased risk of serious adverse effects.”

Abstract → 


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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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].


  1. Thanks for this Kermit. I’m waiting for Bob’s blog on the research into how much earlier people die when they’ve been on psychiatric medications beginning at a young age.

    Everyone talks about the “25 years earlier” study but that was based on adults talking the meds. What’s the life expectectancy for someone who is started on antipsychotics at age 5, 6, 7?

    I don’t relish the results but they just might be so shocking to the general populace that we can finally ban these drugs for youth. Period.

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