Last reviewed 01/2018

The indications for neuroleptics are:

  • schizophrenia - relatively less effective in the simple form, and in withdrawn or depressed schizophrenic patients. Large dose used at first to control acute symptoms, then reduced for maintenance which lasts for months, sometimes years.

  • affective disorders - in hypomania; in some cases of agitated and psychotic depression in conjunction with antidepressant treatment; in schizo-affective disorders - alone in the excited phase, with an antidepressant in the depressed phase.

  • acute symptomatic psychoses - and chronic brain syndromes with psychomotor agitation and paranoid symptoms - especially trifluoperazine.

  • in other patients, e.g. those with personality disorder or mental retardation, for symptomatic control of aggressive outbursts of agitation - the drug action is probably due to sedating side effects.

  • neuroses: to relieve anxiety and tension, as an alternative to minor tranquillisers especially when there is a high risk of dependency. Use with caution in short courses because of possible movement disorders.