Risperdal is currently used to treat severe psychiatric disorders despite escalating reports of unhealthy weight gain and gynecomastia. Due to the drug’s success and its lack of proper warning, though, doctors continue to use it to treat schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, bipolar disorder and autism.
Risperdal is categorized in the class of atypical antipsychotic drugs, which is one of the most popular classes of prescription drugs. Atypical antipsychotics, while curbing psychotic symptoms, dramatically increase the appetites of those dependent on them. Studies show up to 30 percent of patients taking them experience weight gain of at least 7 percent of their body weight.
But, even when those with increased appetites eat well and exercise, they continue to gain weight. This indicates that hormones play a role in weight gain, tying it to other side effects of the drug. Even lesser known than the Risperdal side effect of weight gain, though, is its connection with gynecomastia.
Risperdal and Gynecomastia
Risperdal and gynecomastia are linked, causing some young males who take the medication to develop breasts, which can secrete milk. Gynecomastia side effects, on the other hand, include:
- Lowered self-esteem
- Decreased social functioning
- Diminished mental & physical health
- Lessened standard quality of life
Gynecomastia can easily be confused with weight gain, though, as many people are not aware of the condition. Additionally, the condition is more prevalent in those going through puberty, making the common use of Risperdal in children and adolescents problematic.
If you or a loved one has been affected by Risperdal and gynecomastia side effects, contact one of the Simmons Hanly Conroy Risperdal lawyers today to learn more about your legal rights.