- A large number of drugs are capable of causing dystonia.
- In most cases, people develop an acute dystonic reaction resulting after a one-time exposure. Symptoms may include intermittent spasmodic or sustained involuntary contractions of muscles in the face, neck, trunk, pelvis, and extremities.
- Acute dystonic reaction symptoms are usually transient and may be treated successfully with medications.
- Another type of drug-induced dystonia is called tardive dystonia.
- Tardive dystonia is a form of tardive dyskinesia, which includes involuntary movements that resemble multiple movement disorders.
- Tardive dyskinesias are neurologic syndromes caused by exposure to certain drugs, namely a class of medications called neuroleptics.
- Treatment includes stopping the medication that triggered the symptoms. Substitute drugs may be recommended to replace neuroleptics.
- Other drugs such as benzodiazepines, adrenergic antagonists, and dopamine agonists may also be beneficial.
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