For adults with (and adults without) learning disabilities who have tardive dyskinesia/ tardive dystonia/ chorea or other movement disorders, how effective are pharmacological interventions at managing or improving their movement disorder?
There is very little research in this area; only one, well
conducted, but small, study was identified, which found that
clomipramine reduces repetitive movements. Further, larger studies
are required which look at other pharmacological interventions with
individuals both with and without learning disabilities.
Clinical and research
One small crossover trial in 10 participants with severe or
profound mental retardation found that treatment with clomipramine
reduced the frequency of repetitive behaviours in body and object
movements compared with placebo. It also reduced the number of days
requiring behavioural intervention by staff but had no impact on
the frequency of compulsions or self-injurious behaviour, or
teachers' assessments of hyperactivity, irritability or lethargy.
Although this was a well-conducted study, due to its small size no
definite conclusions about the effectiveness of clomipramine can be
made. Further, larger-scale, controlled trials assessing
clomipramine and other pharmacological interventions in adults with
or without learning disabilities are needed.
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