Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) constitutes the most serious adverse effect of antipsychotic medications. Although it was initially described as a complication of conventional neuroleptics, atypical antipsychotic agents are also capable of inducing the syndrome. It has been suggested that atypical antipsychotic-induced NMS may be qualitatively and quantitatively different from the NMS caused by conventional neuroleptics; however, atypical antipsychotics can also be associated with severe forms of NMS. We report two patients who manifested severe NMS in association with atypical antipsychotic agents. Both patients were receiving low antipsychotic doses; moreover, one of the patients had not undergone any recent changes in his antipsychotic regimen. Thus, it is pointed out that vigilance for signs of NMS should not be influenced by antipsychotic type and dose.

Key words: Neuroleptic malignant syndrome, atypical antipsychotics, typical antipsychotics, mortality.

C. Andreou, V.P. Bozikas, G. Kounenis, G. Garyfallos, J. Giouzepas, C. Fokas (page 273) - Full article (Greek)