Alternatives to Risperdal

Dealing with psychotic disorders can be difficult, especially parents of autistic children with explosive and aggressive behavior. One of the more effective treatments for this type of autism is Risperdal, the trade name for the atypical antipsychotic drug risperidone. However, there are severe side effects.

Risperdal was approved for certain types of autism in children in 2006. It was originally approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the management of schizophrenia in 1994. However, Risperdal proved to cause significant reduction in aggression and tantrums, hyperactivity, and self-injury. This led to its prescription for children with bipolar disorder as well as autism. The ability to control their own disruptive behavior allows the children to respond better to social and education programs and interventions. They can then benefit from these programs.

Unfortunately, as the Risperdal attorneys from the Williams Kherkher law firm discuss on their website, taking Risperdal has its drawbacks. This may include gynecomastia (male breast development), sexual dysfunction, hyperprolactinemia (elevated levels of prolactin that can lead to osteoporosis), and heart attacks. Janssen Pharmaceuticals, a division of Johnson & Johnson (J&J) and maker of Risperdal, failed to include these possible side effects in their warning labels and medical literature.

These adverse side effects have serious consequences for the patient, and the failure to warn impacts on the patient’s right to choose to take their chances. The worst thing is there are quite a few alternatives to Risperdal that do not have these side effects.

It is true that alternatives to Risperdal may not be as effective. However, they pose less of a risk to the physical, emotional, and psychological health of the patient, who is already suffering from a serious mental or behavioral disorder. Doctors can still choose to offer Risperdal to patients, but it should be with the full knowledge of what they are getting into.

If you decided to take Risperdal based on incomplete information, you have the right to sue the drug company for their oversight. It may be too late to change your medical options as the damage has been done, but you can still have legal recourse. Talk to a knowledgeable Risperdal lawyer in your state to find out more about your legal options.


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