Nursing Home Antipsychotic Drugs Still In Debate

A nursing home patient showed dramatic changes in responsiveness after taking antipsychotic drugs. He was later. “We took him into this home thinking this would be the best place for him,” his daughter said. “[After] a day or two, he’s a different person. It was like he was a vegetable. There was nothing to him. Staring in space, drugged out.” The patient was said to be combative; and therefore the drugs were prescribed.

The debate remains whether the drugs should be prescribed only to schizophrenic and bipolar disorder patients or extended beyond those diagnoses. The FDA placed a black box warning on the drugs against use for patients with dementia. Nursing home staff say it is easier to deal with the patient, but the drugs often reduce the function of a patient far beyond the lessening of aggression or combativeness. For more, read the story.
Robert W. Carter, Jr. is a Virginia attorney whose law practice is dedicated to protecting the rights of the victims of nursing home and assisted living neglect and abuse in Richmond, Roanoke, Norfolk, Lynchburg, Danville, Charlottesville, and across Virginia.

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