The use of risperidone among individuals with mental retardation: clinically supported or not?

Ashvind N. Singh, Department of Psychology, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, LA, USA.
Johnny L. Matson
Christopher L. Cooper
Dennis Dixon
Peter Sturmey


Since their introduction, antipsychotic medications have been used widely to treat conditions other than psychiatric disorders, especially among individuals with mental retardation. Researchers have shown that the prevalence rates of psychotropic medication prescriptions among this population are extremely high. Given the limited empirical data to support the use of psychotropic medications, specifically antipsychotics, among individuals with mental retardation, this trend is a cause for concern. This review was undertaken in an effort to summarize the available studies regarding the use of the atypical antipsychotic drug risperidone among individuals with mental retardation and provide a resource for clinicians, care givers, and parents. Based on the results of this review, the effectiveness of risperidone in targeting psychopathology and challenging behaviors for individuals with mental retardation is questionable at present.