Choosing Wisely: APA Addresses Antipsychotics
October 11, 2013 | Aging Services Risk, Quality, & Safety Guidance
Antipsychotic medications should not be the first choice to treat behavioral or psychological symptoms of dementia, according to a list of Five Things Physicians and Patients Should Question issued by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). The list was created as part of the Choosing Wisely campaign (for more information, see the March 1, 2013, Issues in Continuing Care Risk Management). For people with dementia, risks include mortality, cerebrovascular effects, extrapyramidal signs, cognitive disturbances, sedation, and higher body weight. The risks “tend to outweigh the potential benefits,” the list states.