Typical Antipsychotic Drugs
Typical antipsychotics are also referred to as major tranquilizers or neuroleptics. They are an older class of antipsychotics, used predominantly until 1994 when
were released for general use. Still used today, when other drugs are not effective, and in institutional settings. Sometimes used for seniors to control agitation. Controversial use in nursing homes on seniors. Some studies indicate that they may increase the risk of death for seniors.
The first typical antipsychotic to be used on a wide-scale basis was Thorazine, which was introduced to mental institutions around 1958. Thorazine changed the practice of psychiatry in mental institutions. It was found that the drug quieted agitated patients, and contributed to a more serene atmosphere in mental institutions. Gone were the days of widespread use of lobotomies
and physical restraints (50,000 forced lobotomies were carried out in the United States during several decades prior to 1960).
All green links on this page are off-site links from sponsors and funds are used to support the non-profit activities of the AYCNP
Typical antipsychotics are sometimes referred to as first generation antipsychotics, neuroleptics, or classical neuroleptics, or major tranquilizers.
These may also be used for the treatment of acute mania, agitation, and other conditions. The first typical antipsychotics to enter clinical use were the phenothiazines.
Stronger side effect profile than atypical antipsychotics. Sedation and heavy sedation common. These are the drugs that have been used as "chemical straightjackets" or as a "chemical lobotomy" in mental institutions. When used heavily they can be incapacitating. Overmedicating in mental institutions can be common. "'Chemical lobotomy' and regressive electroshock bring about alterations in behavior superficially resembling those of lobotomy, but without the changes in personality that are the object of lobotomy."
A Closer Look at Biopharmacology
Antipsychotic drugs - Types, Uses, Effects, Side Effects:
Low potency dopamine blockade
Sometimes classified as a minor tranquilizer. A derivative of the first typical antipsychotic, Thorazine.
Extremely high potency antipsychotic. Derivative of chloropromazine (Thorazine). 50-70 times more potent than chloropromazine (Thorazine). Given orally in institutional settings, or by long-acting intra-muscular injection especially for those non-compliant with medicine and who have frequent relapses. Used for severe psychosis, schizophrenia and bipolar disorder.
Other trade names:
Aloperidin, Bioperidolo, Brotopon, Dozic, Duraperidol (Germany), Einalon S, Eukystol, Haldol, Halosten, Keselan, Linton, Peluces, Serenace, Serenase, and Sigaperidol.
High potency antipsychotic
Haloperidol is an older antipsychotic used in the treatment of schizophrenia and for acute psychotic states and delirium. A long acting injection given every 4 weeks to people with schizophrenia or related illnesses who have a poor compliance with medication and with frequent relapses.
Psychosis (especially schizophrenia), agitation, delusions, hallucinations, aggressive or violent behavior.
Other Typical Antipsychotics
Prochlorperazine Compazine, Buccastem, Stemetil
Effects and Side Effects of Typical Antipsychotics
Variable in suppressing symptoms. Sedating, extremely sedating, dry mouth.
Parkinsonism or Parkinson-like symptoms (in teens also)
tardive dyskinesia (which involves involuntary facial movements, a
disfiguring disturbance e of motor control).
Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome, or NMS
Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrom (NMS) is a rare, but potentially fatal side effect of antipsychotic treatment. It is characterized by fever, muscle rigidity, autonomic dysfunction, and altered mental status. Discontinuation of the use of typical antipsychotic is of necessity.
Typical Antipsychotics Page Sources
1. Antipsychotics: Side-effects of Typical Antipsychotics, (2000). Professor George Beaumon Medscape Today.
2. Introduction: Mental Health Medications, (2008). National Institute of Mental Health.
3. PSYCHOSURGERY—Present Indications and Future Prospects, (June 1958). Walter Freeman. Western Journal of Medicine. PubMed Central
4. Typical Antipsychotics, (November 2011). Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust.
References Related to Antipsychotic Drugs - off-site links
Psychiatric Drugs: Thorazine, (1999). Gene Zimmer. SNTP
The risks of prescribing (atypical) antipsychotics to kids, (February 5, 2012. Carly. The Globe and Mail.
Szalavitz, M. August 9, 2012. Antipsychotic Prescriptions in Children Have Skyrocketed: Study
The dramatic rise of antipsychotic prescribing in youth occurred in conjunction with the illegal marketing of the drugs by their makers, resulting in multibillion-dollar settlements with the government. Time Healthland (Time Magazine). (off-site link)
Pages Related to Atypical Antipsychotics (on-site)
Issues in Psychiatry - A Closer Look at Psychopharmacology
Psychiatric Drugs - Types
Opium and Brief History of Psychiatric Drugs