Case series: Spectrum of neuroleptic-induced movement disorders and extrapyramidal side effects in childhood-onset schizophrenia

S. Kumra, L. K. Jacobsen, M. Lenane, A. Smith, P. Lee, C. J. Malanga, B. I. Karp, S. Hamburger, J. L. Rapoport

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations


Objective: Neuroleptic-treated pediatric patients with childhood-onset schizophrenia (COS) are at risk for developing extrapyramidal side effects and involuntary movement disorders. A preliminary examination of the incidence of withdrawal dyskinesias (WD), tardive dyskinesia (TD), and extrapyramidal side effects in these patients is presented. Method: Thirty- four COS patients (mean age ± SD, 14.2 ± 2.1 years) were examined for TD using the Abnormal Involuntary Movements Scale and for extrapyramidal side effects using the Simpson-Angus Neurologic Rating Scale, after a 14- to 28- day drug-free period (n = 33), at week 6 of treatment and 2 to 4 years after completion of the study (n = 14). The mean (±SD) number of months of prior neuroleptic exposure for the group was 22.4 (15.0) months. Results: Seventeen (50%) of 34 patients were noted to have either WD or TD at some point during their participation in the studies. The majority of patients experienced WD that were mainly in the orofacial region, transient in nature, and diminished with haloperidol and clozapine. Patients with TD/WD had greater levels of premorbid impairment (p = .02), increased severity of positive symptoms of schizophrenia (p < .01), and a trend toward more months of neuroleptic exposure (p = .10, one-tailed). Conclusions: A high proportion of COS patients were found to have TD/WD. The majority of these abnormal movements were not severe and generally improved over time. TD/WD in COS appears to be associated with greater premorbid impairment, severity of illness, and duration of neuroleptic exposure.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)221-227
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1998
Externally publishedYes


  • Childhood-onset schizophrenia
  • Extrapyramidal side effects
  • Neuroleptics
  • Tardive dyskinesia
  • Withdrawal dyskinesia


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