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Side effects of psychotropic drugs

Managing Side Effects of Psychotropic Drugs. A Clinical Handbook for Health Care Professionals

L. Kola Oyewumi, Renee de Wit

Zxmaxx Communications, Suite 604, 695 Richmond St, London, ON N6A 5M8

1998/264 pp

Strengths

Deals with an important yet neglected area

Weaknesses

Poorly organized; hard to use or find information; no advantages compared with other sources

Audience

Side effects of psychotropic drugsPhysicians, pharmacists, other health care workers, patients, families

The authors hope this book will be used as a reference manual on the side effects of psychotropics. It is organized on the basis of side effects rather than by classes of medications. The authors believe that this allows them to better address their subject matter while ensuring that the contents remain current.

There are 10 chapters with 21 tables and a figure. Although 283 references are given, rarely are any cited. The table of contents and the index are not very helpful. Early in the book it states that sexual dysfunction will be dealt with as a physical side effect, but later on sexual problems (other than priapism) are listed under psychiatric and behavioural side effects.

Syndrome of inappropriate secretion of antidiuretic hormone (SIADH), diabetes, and primary poly-dipsia are presented poorly. The classification of cognitive disturbances is, in itself, confusing: “confusion,” “intellectual impairment,” and “memory” are separate subheadings while delirium is under “psychosis.” Laboratory tests to perform before prescribing psychotropics are suggested. There is no reference, and it is unclear whether these investigations are recommended for all patients. Postmarketing surveillance for adverse effects is covered, but practical advice is not given.

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