Effects of Nifedipine on Psychosis and: Tardive Dyskinesia in Schizophrenic Patients

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In an open label study, two fixed doses of nifedipine (30 mg and 60 mg daily) were added to the usual antipsychotic drug treatments of 10 patients suffering from chronic schizophrenia. While no patient experienced significant improvements, statistically significant falls in Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale scores were observed. A significant reduction in Abnormal Involuntary Movement Scale scores was observed in those patients with tardive dyskinesia. After the addition of nifedipine, four of the 10 patients showed large increases in plasma neuroleptic activity (radioreceptor assay) that decreased to baseline levels within two weeks. The possibility that this represents competitive inhibition and subsequent induction of the liver metabolism of the antipsychotic drugs is discussed. Adverse effects encountered are also discussed.

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