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Drug ignorance weighs heavily.

Byline: FionaPhillips

A FRIGHTENING report into powerful antipsychotic drugs has found that psychiatrists are largely ignorant about the side effects.

My dad, in the later stages of Alzheimer's, put on heaps of weight and deteriorated beyond measure on antipsychotics in a psychiatric hospital. I was led to believe weight gain was normal, that his shuffling gait was nothing new, until he died weeks later.

The report, part of an inquiry into the appalling treatment of schizophrenia, confirms that gross weight gain at a "startling" rate is a side effect and that there is widespread ignorance among psychiatrists about dosage and effects.

Too late to save my dad and others like him, but a warning to relatives of those suffering from mental health conditions to query any medication you're not absolutely sure about.
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Title Annotation:Features; Opinion, Column
Publication:The Mirror (London, England)
Date:Nov 17, 2012
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