Risperdal® (risperidone) is an antipsychotic medication manufactured by Janssen Pharmaceuticals, owned by Johnson & Johnson. Risperdal® works by interfering with the communication among nerves in the brain. Janssen Pharmaceuticals settled a lawsuit regarding illegal marketing to pediatric and elderly patients regarding unapproved conditions such as: alzheimer disease; dementia; depression; and anxiety. Risperdal® currently is prescribed to children with autism; mood disorders such as schizophrenia; psychotic features of bipolar disorder; conduct disorders; and among other behavioral disorders. Elderly patients are prescribed Risperdal® most commonly today to control elder behavioral disorders.
Serious side effects may affect those taking Risperdal® such as males growing abnormal breasts (gynecomastia) due to hormonal alterations, and a movement disorder known as tardive dyskinesia. Furthermore, it has been reported that tardive dyskinesia does not always go away when the patient stops taking Risperdal® and may last a lifetime. Symptoms of tardive dyskinesia include uncontrollable movements of the tongue, mouth, cheeks, jaw, arms or legs. Other serious side effects include: pituitary tumors; neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) which may cause severe muscle stiffness; fever; severe tiredness or weakness; rapid heartbeat; difficulty breathing; increased sweating; loss of bladder control; seizures; and death.