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Horowitz, 2020 Tapering Antipsychotic Treatment


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Horowitz MA, Murray RM, Taylor D.

Tapering Antipsychotic Treatment. 

JAMA Psychiatry. Published online August 05, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2020.2166




This Viewpoint discusses principles for tapering antipsychotic treatment when deprescribing them.


Mad in America published an article on the above study:




"Antipsychotics’ effect on the brain follows a “hyperbolic” pattern. That is, doubling the dose doesn’t result in a doubled effect; instead, doubling the dose creates a linear increase in the drugs’ effect. Thus, to slowly taper off of the drug, the best strategy is a hyperbolic reduction—halving the amount of drug used every three to six months, resulting in eventual infinitesimal amounts of the drug.


According to the researchers, each time the dose is halved, the D2 blockade reduces by a small, linear amount (about 10%):


For example, risperidone doses of 8 mg, 4 mg, 2 mg, 1 mg, 0.5 mg, 0.25 mg, 0.125 mg, and 0 mg produce roughly 10–percentage point reductions in the extent of D2 blockade. This pattern of reduction may be less likely to provoke relapse because it avoids large increases in dopaminergic signaling.


They write that the final dose may need to be tiny, about 2.5% of the initial amount, and that liquid formulations might be an effective way of being able to provide these minimal doses."

Edited by Altostrata
Journals format

My psychiatric drug history goes back, on and off, to 1999.  This is my taper chronology:

Jan. 2018:                        900 mg  Lithium                      1 mg Risperidone               250 mg Lamotrigine 

Jan. 2018:                        0 mg  Lithium*                        1 mg Risperidone               250 mg Lamotrigine 

Jan. 2019:                        0 mg Lithium                           0.625 mg Risperidone       175 mg Lamotrigine

Jan. 2020:                       0 mg Lithium                           0.260 mg Risperidone       175 mg Lamotrigine

Feb. 2021:                        0 mg Lithium                           0 mg Risperidone              175 mg Lamotrigine

August 2021                    0 mg Lithium                           0 mg Risperidone              0 mg Lamotrigine

*I had to cold turkey lithium because of life-threatening side effects.

Measuring doses: The Withdrawal Project at the Inner Compass Initiative website, which explains how to do the microtaper to make it as smooth as possible   Nutrition: The Clean Gut Diet by Alejandro Junger, MD, and Viva Naturals Omega 3 Fish Oil Supplements.  Psychological: "Dr. Bruce H. Lipton Explains How To Reprogram The Subconscious Mind" (on YouTube) and PSYCH-K (an alternative healing modality).  

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