Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome/Malignant Catatonia in Child Psychiatry: Literature Review and a Case Series

Neera Ghaziuddin, Melissa Hendriks, Paresh Patel, Lee E. Wachtel, Dirk M. Dhossche

Research output: Research - peer-reviewReview article

Abstract

Objective: To describe the presentation of neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) and malignant catatonia (MC) in children and adolescents. Background: NMS and MC are life-Threatening, neuropsychiatric syndromes, associated with considerable morbidity and mortality. NMS is diagnosed when there is a recent history of treatment with an antipsychotic (AP) medication, while MC is diagnosed when the symptoms resemble NMS but without a history of exposure to an AP agent. Some authorities believe that apart from the history of exposure to an AP medication, the two conditions are identical. The symptoms of NMS/MC include severe agitation, behavior disregulation, motor and speech changes, self-injury and aggression, autonomic instability, and a range of psychiatric symptoms (affective, anxiety, or psychotic symptoms). Patients may be misdiagnosed with another disorder leading to extensive tests and a delay in treatment. Untreated, the condition may be fatal in 10%-20% of patients, with death sometimes occurring within days of disease onset. Method: We describe the presentation and management of five children and adolescents with NMS/MC. Conclusion: MC and NMS are life-Threatening medical emergencies, which if diagnosed promptly, can be successfully treated with known effective treatments (benzodiazepines and/or electroconvulsive therapy).

LanguageEnglish (US)
Pages359-365
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology
Volume27
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2017
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Catatonia
Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome
Child Psychiatry
Psychiatry in Literature
Antipsychotic Agents
Therapeutics
Affective Symptoms
Electroconvulsive Therapy
Diagnostic Errors
Aggression
Benzodiazepines
Psychiatry
Emergencies
Anxiety
History
Morbidity
Mortality
Wounds and Injuries

Keywords

  • adolescents
  • children
  • malignant catatonia (MC)
  • neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)

Cite this

Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome/Malignant Catatonia in Child Psychiatry : Literature Review and a Case Series. / Ghaziuddin, Neera; Hendriks, Melissa; Patel, Paresh; Wachtel, Lee E.; Dhossche, Dirk M.

In: Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology, Vol. 27, No. 4, 01.05.2017, p. 359-365.

Research output: Research - peer-reviewReview article

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