Purpose, development, and limitations of Antipsychotics and their Side Effects   pp. xviii-xix

By David M. Gardner, Michael D. Teehan and Ross Baldessarini

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The possible side effects of antipsychotics are extensive, varied, frequently intolerable, too often serious, and sometimes fatal. Clinicians cannot be expected to use these drugs optimally in the care of their patients when inexperienced with the antipsychotic prescribed or unfamiliar with the adverse possibilities and how to monitor for them. This book aims to support clinicians in improving the safe, long-term use of antipsychotic drugs by their patients. Specifically, this book is designed to (1) help inform antipsychotic treatment selections for individual patients (Section 1); and (2) support monitoring of antipsychotic-related side effects over the course of therapy (Sections 2 … 3). For more details, refer to the Guide to using Antipsychotics and their Side Effects on p. xx.

Antipsychotics and Their Side Effects was developed as a comprehensive, extensively referenced resource following a semi-systematic approach using three main sources of information: (1) the best available evidence; (2) identification of best practices; and (3) incorporation of our clinical and expert opinion.


There is little or no research that directly assesses the best methods for the monitoring of antipsychotic treatment tolerance or safety. However, selected research and information on the effectiveness, tolerability, and safety of antipsychotics can be used to develop appropriate monitoring practices.