Prevalence of extrapyramidal syndromes in psychiatric inpatients and the relationship of clozapine treatment to tardive dyskinesia

Schizophr Res. 2000 May 5;42(3):223-30. doi: 10.1016/s0920-9964(99)00133-4.


In 200 inpatients on regular neuroleptics, point prevalence of extrapyramidal syndromes, including Parkinson syndrome, akathisia and tardive dyskinesia (TD), was studied and found to be 20, 11 and 22%, respectively. A total of 46 patients have currently, and for a longer time, (average about 3years, median over 1year) been treated with clozapine, and 127 with typical neuroleptics (NLs). Comparing both groups, higher TD scores were found in the clozapine sample. Investigating the influence of a set of seven clinical variables on the TD score with the help of multiple regression analysis, the influence of the treatment modality disappeared, whereas the age proved to be the only significant variable. Studying the role of past clozapine therapy in patients currently on typical NLs and comparing 10 matched pairs of chronic patients with and without TD in whom a complete life-time cumulative dose of NLs was identified, a relationship between TD and length of current typical NL therapy and life-time typical NL dosage could be demonstrated. On the whole, long-term relatively extensive use of clozapine has not markedly reduced the prevalence of extrapyramidal syndromes in our psychiatric inpatient population. In particular, we failed to demonstrate a beneficial effect of clozapine on prevalence of TD. There are certainly patients who suffer from TD in spite of a long-term intensive clozapine treatment.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Antipsychotic Agents / adverse effects*
  • Basal Ganglia Diseases / complications*
  • Basal Ganglia Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Chronic Disease
  • Clozapine / adverse effects*
  • Dyskinesia, Drug-Induced / diagnosis*
  • Dyskinesia, Drug-Induced / etiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mental Disorders / complications*
  • Mental Disorders / drug therapy*
  • Middle Aged
  • Prevalence
  • Time Factors


  • Antipsychotic Agents
  • Clozapine