What Meds

Psychiatric Medications

Brand Name: Risperdal

Risperdal is the brand name for Risperidone, an antipsychotic agent used to treat certain types of psychotic thinking. It has been found to improve both positive and negative symptoms of schizophrenia. The exact mechanism of action of risperidone is unknown, but it blocks serotonin type 2 (5-HT2) receptors and a dopamine type 2 (D2) receptors. Antipsychotic activity may be mediated through blockade of serotonin receptors in the cerebral cortex and dopamine receptors in the limbic system.

Why is this drug prescribed?
Risperdal is FDA-approved for:

Risperdal is also used to treat:

How much of this drug is typically used?
Oral solution: 1mg/ml
Tablet: 0.25, 0.5, 1, 2, 3, 4mg
Intramuscular powder for suspension, extended release (Risperdal Consta): 12.5, 25, 37.5, 50mg
Disintegrating tablet (Risperdal M-Tab): 0.5, 1, 2, 3, 4mg

Risperdal’s effects on children under age 18 have not been studied and are not known.

Risperdal can lower mental alertness. Patients should not drive or operate machinery until the effects of Risperdal are known.

Risperdal may increase a patient’s sensitivity to sunlight. Patients should wear sunscreen and avoid exposure to sunlight.

There is a slight chance that Risperdal can cause Tardative Dyskenia, a disease whose symptoms include fine, worm-like movements of the tongue, or other uncontrolled movements of the mouth, tongue, cheeks, jaw, or arms and legs.

Risperdal may cause Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome (NMS), a life threatening side effect of any antipsychotic drug which is more common in high-potency antipsychotics. Symptoms include rigidness, fever, rapid heartbeat, rapid breathing, abnormal blood pressure, heavy sweating, and a change in mental state, from confusion to coma.

Antacids should not be taken within 2 hours of this drug.

For Pregnant or Nursing Mothers: Studies in animals indicate that Risperdal may cause unwanted effects on the fetus. Risperdal passes into the breast milk of animals, and it is not recommended that women taking Risperdal breastfeed.

Risperdal should not be used for people with an allergy or hypersensitivity to Risperdal or any of its ingrediants.

Risperdal may be used with caution in people with the following conditions:

Adverse Reactions
Risperdal may cause the following reactions:


Interactions with Drugs and Other Substances
Drugs or substances that may interact with Risperdal include:

Research Studies and Use in Child Psychiatry
Bipolar disorder: Several open-label and one double-blind, placebo controlled trial in children and adolescents with mania showed that risperidone significantly improves symptoms of mania, even at doses less than 2mg/day.

Autism: Two randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trails showed that risperidone significantly improved irritability in children and adolescents with autism, and may also improve other symptoms such as social withdrawal and hyperactivity as well. Risperidone is currently the only FDA-approved drug for treating behavioral symptoms in children with autism.

Early-onset schizophrenia: A randomized trial in adolescents with schizophrenia showed significant improvement in symptoms compared to placebo.

Disruptive behaviors: Risperidone is the most well studied atypical antipsychotic for disruptive behaviors and conduct disorder in children and adolescents, and multiple studies have shown reductions in aggressive behaviors.


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