Tardive Dyskinesia is a disorder resulting in involuntary and repetitive body movements such as lip smacking, lip pursing rapid eye blinking, tongue protrusion and many other nonsense rapid body movements. Tardive dyskinesia is often misdiagnosed as a mental illness. But the truth is, it is a neurological disorder, which is often the result of after a prolonged use or use of antipsychotic drugs in high dosage. This could also occur in children after taking medications of gastrointestinal problems. Although tardive dyskinesia hasd been diagnosed over 50 years ago, the disorder is not fully understood by many specialists. Other than being believed to have primarily resulted from the use of neuroleptics, very little is still known about the disorder and tardive dyskinesia treatment had not been discovered.
Tardive dyskinesia treatment is impossible as of present time. There were several attempts done to cure the disorder but none had been proven to be truly effective. A tranquilizer called chloriazepoxide hydrochloride or also known as Librium has been used to cure the disorder. However, the tranquilizer was said to be habit-forming. Although some patients have claimed to have received temporal benefits from drug, its success to cure the disorder had not been great enough for it to be considered the proper treatment or drug. Currently, there is a drug called tetrabenazine that is being studied and researched to be used for tardive dyskinesia treatment. The drug is used to treat Huntington’s disease. It is a disorder that is characterized by involuntary movements that go from one to muscle to another. The drug helps in the metabolism of dopamine which is important in helping neurotransmitters function efficiently. The drug is also used to treat hyperkinetic or compulsive movements.
However, though tetrabenazine reduces the symptoms of tardive dyskinesia, it had also not been proven to be the right cure for the disorder. The drug also causes anxiety, dizziness, paranoia, drowsiness, fatigue and depression. So since, tardive dyskinesia treatment without any adverse effect is impossible at present, prevention of the disorder is still the primary shield against it. Another drug used to treat the disorder is Zofran. It had showed benefits in experimental studies but had not proven to be truly effective. Clonidine is also used for spasms and even botox injections are used for minor dystonia. An anticonvulsant called benzodiazepines had also been used and has proven to be effective in reducing the symptoms of the disorder however the use of the drug might cause a withdrawal syndrome after discontinuation. For patients who need neuroleptic medication, it is always best for patients and for doctors too to use the lowest effective dose of neuroleptic and for the shortest possible time. Although this can be a malady, because sometimes doctors and families are left with two tough choices: prevent recurrence of psychosis or deal with tardive dyskinesia. But, this is only for those with chronic psychosis such as schizophrenia. But for milder cases, if tardive dyskinesia is diagnosed, it is advised to discontinue the use of the drug that had caused it.
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