Crime scene

Antipsychotic medications have positive impact on crime figures

By: Information Daily Staff Writer
Published: Thursday, May 8, 2014 - 00:01 GMT Jump to Comments

Those that require antipsychotic medication halve their risk of committing a violent crime when medicated, a report has confirmed.

Antipsychotic medications used to treat psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia and manic depression are reducing violent crime rates, a study has suggested.

Published in journal The Lancet, the results point to commonly prescribed drugs, including clozapine and risperidone, as a key factor in reducing violent behaviours.

A team of researchers based in the UK and Sweden studied the health and crime records of 80,000 patients being treated with antipsychotic or mood stabilising drugs.

During the course of the study from 2006 to 2009, 6.5 per cent of men and 1.4 per cent of women were convicted of a violent crime.

Crime rates fell, however, by 45 per cent for patients actively taking antipsychotics and by 24 per cent for those taking mood stabilisers.

Dr Fazel, study author from Oxford University, explained: “Patients with psychiatric disorders are at risk of perpetrating violent acts, as well as being victims. Until now, we have not known whether antipsychotics and mood stabilizers reduce risks of violence.

“By comparing the same people when they are on medication compared to when they are not, our study provides evidence of potentially substantial reductions in risk of violence, and suggests that violence is to a large extent preventable in patients with psychiatric disorders.”

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