The traditional treatment of behavior problems in Alzheimer dementia is anti psychotics like Thioridazine, chlorpromazine, haloperidol, Trifluoperazine, Risperdal, Zyprexa, and Seroquel. These drugs are the top selling medications in almost every western country.
The medications are effective and can treat a range of personality changes, anxiety, paranoia and panic associated with dementia. However, the drugs also have potent side effects and can also induce severe irreversible motor movements.
Alzheimer’s disease has no cure and the few drugs available only work in the early stages. Globally the cost of dementia is close to $315 billion, the majority of which is spent by the western countries.
Now with the British study, some health professional suggest that anti psychotics should only be used as a last resort. Says Dr Neil Hunt, CEO of Britain’s Alzheimer's Society, "The scandalous over prescription of antipsychotic drugs leads to an estimated 1,800 deaths a year. It must end."
Earlier this year, a study published by British scientists revealed that anti psychotics prescribed to older AD patients increased the risk of premature death.