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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 45 (2003) 5, 287 - 292

Case report

Beta-blockers … an effective treatment of akathisia? A case study

C. Baeken, G. Pieters

summary  Akathisia is a complex syndrome, frequently linked to treatment with antipsychotics. There are no universal diagnostic criteria and no specific locomotor pathognomonic sign is available. Betablockers are said to be an effective treatment for akathisia. Inspired by a case study, the recent literature on beta-blockers was examined. There are comparatively few reports of controlled trials and most of these trials were performed in the late eighties. These studies do not state ambiguously that beta-blockers constitute an effective treatment for antipsychotic induced akathisia. Tentative guidelines are proposed for clinical practice.

keywords akathisia, beta-blockers, antipsychotics