Charles Kaplan Revised by Frederick K Grittner

NEUROLEPTIC Neuroleptic includes any of a group of drugs that are also called ANTIPSYCHOTICS. Neuroleptics are used as medications in the treatment of acute psychoses of unknown origin, including mania and SCHIZOPHRENIA. The prototype neuroleptic drugs are chlorpromazine (Thorazine), haloperidol (Haldol), clozapine (Clozaril), lithium (Lithonate), and thioridazine (Mellaril). Some of the newer drugs include risperidone (Risperdal), quetiapine (Seroquel), and olanzapine (Zyprexa). The site of action for these drugs (receptor site) is the central nervous system where they produce antipsychotic effects.

These drugs are also used for antianxiety, although other agents are more effective and do not have the long-term side effects that neuroleptics do. Drug therapy alone is not entirely effective in treating psychoses, and it is used in combination with acute and long-term support and medical care. Some neuroleptics are also used in the treatment of nausea, vomiting, alcoholic hallucinosis, neuropsychiatry diseases marked by movement disorders (e.g., Huntington's disease and Gilles de la Tourette's syndrome), pruritus, and intractable hiccough.


Baldessarini, R. J. (1996). Drugs and the treatment of psychiatric disorders—mood disorders. In A. G. Gilman et al. (Eds.), Goodman and Gilman's the pharmacological basis of therapeutics, 9th ed. New York: McGraw Hill. Ross-Flanigan, Nancy (1999). Antipsychotic drugs. In Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine, 1st ed. Farmington Hills, MI: Gale Group.

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