Treatment of Schizophrenia

Since there is no known cause of schizophrenia that can be singled out, all treatments of schizophrenia available in the market today focus on getting rid of the symptoms that come with the disorder. Treatments generally include different psychological treatments and the use of antipsychotic medications.  Antipsychotics have been in existence since mid 50’s when they were developed. The earliest antipsychotic medications available in the market today and which are used include Fluphenazine (Prolixin), Haloperidol (Haldol), Chlorpromazine (Thorazine) and Perphenazine (Etrafon, Trilafon). The latest antipsychotic medications available in the market and which were developed during the 90s are known as “atypical” or second generation antipsychotics and include:-

Clozapine(clozaril) which has been used effectively in treating hallucinations, psychotic symptoms as well as breaks or losing touch with reality. This medication has however been reported to cause a condition known as agranulocytosis, which is basically the loss of white blood cells in the body that will help someone fight off opportunistic infections. As such, those under this medication are often scheduled for weekly white blood cell count checks. It is the cost of weekly blood tests and the actual cost of medication that makes the treatment of schizophrenia with clozapine unaffordable to many people. Even so, this medication has proven quite effective in people who are not responsive to antipsychotic medications. Other medications that have been developed over the years for this disease include:-

  • Paliperidone (Invega).
  • Aripiprazole (Abilify)
  • Quetiapine (Seroquel)
  • Olanzapine (Zyprexa)
  • Ziprasidone (Geodon)
  • Risperidone (Risperdal)
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