Antipsychotics are currently the predominant treatment for individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia, but there is an accumulating body of research that links the use of these drugs to structural abnormalities in the brain. A recent meta-analysis suggests that gray matter loss in the brain may depend on the dose and class of the antipsychotic.
Antipsychotics are being prescribed to people who may have challenging behaviors but no mental disorder, according to new research published in this month’s issue of BMJ. “Excessive use of psychotropic drugs has individual and systemic implications,” the researchers write. “Antipsychotics, in particular, are associated with several adverse side effects that can impair quality of life and lead to deleterious health outcomes.”
This month’s issue of JAMA Psychiatry ran an editorial commenting on recent research revealing that the majority of youth prescribed antipsychotics have not been diagnosed with a mental disorder.
MedPageToday reports that Janssen Pharmaceuticals omitted data from a 2003 study that connected Risperdal with serious side effects. Janssen was previously sued by the FDA for marketing Risperdal for off-label uses and settled for $2.2 billion in 2013. Earlier this year, a man with autism was awarded $2.5 million after growing breasts while on Risperdal. According to MedPage, documents from this latest case reveal missing data tables from a 2003 study “designed to ferret out potential adverse effects of long-term risperidone use.” The missing tables were related to elevated prolactin levels and side effects, including gynecomastia in men.
Antipsychotics appear to be too often prescribed to curb aggressive impulses in children and youth, rather than to treat psychosis or any other clinically indicated conditions.
Four different studies conducted in different ways examining different groups have linked use of certain psychiatric drugs to bone fracture risks and negative impacts on human bone development.
A team of psychiatrists reviewed 654 cases in West Ireland to find that nearly 1% of all patients taking the antipsychotic clozapine had experienced clozapine-induced stuttering.
Antipsychotic Dose Reduction Linked To Long-term Improvements In First-Episode Schizophrenia Patients
Careful reductions in dosage levels of antipsychotic medications over time improved long-term rates of recovery and functional remission in patients diagnosed with a first-episode psychosis.
Common psychotropic medications may be contributing to the higher rates of physical illnesses and mortality in people diagnosed with mental illnesses.
A study of 5-year outcomes for people taking either an ordinary oral antipsychotic or a long-acting injection of an antipsychotic found no differences between the two.
Researchers found some antipsychotics to be worse than others for causing sexual dysfunction.
Antipsychotic drugs increased the risk of children developing diabetes by 50%, and with an antidepressant added, their risk doubled.
The use by mothers of any of four major classes of psychiatric medications during pregnancy significantly raises the risk that their babies will be born with low birth weights and will need to be hospitalized.
Antipsychotic medications that are commonly being used to help control behaviors in elderly people with dementia seem to be causing premature deaths at high rates.
A literature review found that the extensive off-label use of antipsychotic medications in nursing homes is causing many adverse effects and providing limited benefits.
Clinicians are following best practice guidelines only half of the time when giving antipsychotic medications to children, and following FDA-approved indications only one-fourth of the time.
People who take antipsychotic medications experience many side effects which have "major disruptive impact on their lives," according to research in the Journal of Mental Health Nursing.
Three independent studies in two journals reported strong links between antipsychotics and falls and fractures.
First generation antipsychotics seem to cause general brain volume loss, while second generation antipsychotics seem to both increase and decrease the thickness of different parts of the brain.
Elderly people in Sweden are five times more likely to be taking antipsychotics if they have a diagnosis of dementia, according to research published in Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica. And among those people with dementia, the lower their education the higher the likelihood they’re taking antipsychotics.
More than half of the prescriptions for antipsychotic drugs in the UK are being issued "off-label" to treat conditions other than those for which the drugs are approved, according to a large study published in the British Medical Journal Open. Researchers also found significantly higher levels of prescribing of the medications to poorer people.
Describing the prevalence and management of adverse effects from antipsychotics as "a neglected area" of study, a team of researchers from the UK has published a systematic review in the Journal of Psychopharmacology. They aimed to identify the prevalence of, and management strategies for nine categories of adverse effects, including sedation, weight gain, metabolic syndrome, sexual dysfunction and cardiovascular effects.
The US Food and Drug Administration is warning the public that the antipsychotic medication ziprasidone "is associated with a rare but serious skin reaction...
"Many patients with first-episode psychosis receive medications that do not comply with recommended guidelines for first-episode treatment," states a National Institute of Mental Health...
Common psychiatric medications double the risk of heart attack and triple the risk of stroke, according to research presented at the Canadian Cardiovascular Congress...