The Dangers and Misuse of Antipsychotics in Nursing Home Facilities

The Dangers and Misuse of Antipsychotics in Nursing Home Facilities
Date: February 27, 2023

Antipsychotics are extremely common in nursing home facilities but, this commonality comes along with the statistics of the misuse of antipsychotic drugs. The most common individuals receiving antipsychotic drugs are those suffering from dementia. However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) states that individuals who have dementia are warned of being at serious risk of medical complications and death. So, should you be worried if your loved one is being treated with antipsychotic drugs?

The answer to this is maybe. Antipsychotic drugs are a successful treatment for those who it is genuinely meant for. However, there are increases in the prescriptions of antipsychotics in nursing homes despite this warning by the FDA. Some residents are being placed on antipsychotics without a proper diagnosis warranting this prescription. Being wrongly prescribed antipsychotic medications can be immensely dangerous and harmful. There are clear warning signs to the medication especially geared toward elderly individuals with dementia. As stated by the National Consumer Voice for Quality Long-Term Care, there are serious risks to antipsychotics including “loss of independence, over-sedation, confusion, increased respiratory infections, falls, and strokes”. Back in 2005, the FDA even placed a “Black Box” warning on antipsychotic medications due to the increased risk of death for those diagnosed with dementia.

Antipsychotics can be an effective form of treatment, but a mainstream issue we are consistently seeing is the misuse of the drug. With nursing home facilities constantly abusing antipsychotic drugs, your loved ones are being pushed further into the possibility of harmful risks and even death. Dougherty Leventhal & Price, LLP cares about your loved ones and aims to provide justice for those being put in harm’s way. Reach out to DLP today if you feel you or a loved one residing in a nursing home facility are not receiving the quality treatment you deserve. Remember… Injury? Call DLP! (570) C-A-L-L-D-L-P.

Melissa Weber
DLP intern.