Elderly dementia residents on antipsychotic drugs have soaring stroke risks, researchers find

Share this article:
New study results further underscore scientists' warnings about the risks of stroke involved with giving elderly patients antipsychotic drugs.

There is an increased risk of stroke with both typical and atypical antipsychotics, said study author Dr. Ian Douglas, a research fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Similar findings date back at least six years, according to other researchers.

"This risk is substantially higher in patients with dementia than those without. These findings need to be factored into prescribing decisions made by doctors caring for patients with often-distressing and difficult-to-treat psychiatric symptoms," Douglas said.

Douglas and a colleague studied nearly 6,800 individuals who were taking antipsychotic drugs and had suffered a stroke. Those taking the drugs were 1.7 times more likely to suffer a stroke. The rate more than doubled, to 3.5 times more likely, for dementia patients taking antipsychotics. Study findings were published late last week in the British Medical Journal online.

Share this article:

More in News

Septicemia, urinary tract infections rank high on latest list of hospital readmissions causes

Septicemia, urinary tract infections rank high on latest ...

Two infectious conditions common in long-term care settings — septicemia and urinary tract infections — were among the top causes of hospital readmissions for Medicare beneficiaries in 2011, according to ...

PharMerica to pay $200,000 settlement over federal charges of unsafe dispensing practices

Long-term care pharmacy company PharMerica has agreed to pay about $213,000 to settle charges that it dispensed medications without prescriptions and committed other breaches of the Controlled Substances Act, federal authorities announced Wednesday.

Shortchanging the Older Americans Act has led to unnecessary nursing home placements, ...

Chronic underfunding of the Older Americans Act is leading to unnecessary long-term care facility admissions, Sen. Bernard Sanders (I-VT) and 26 of his Democratic colleagues in the Senate said in a recent letter to Appropriations Committee leaders.