Childhood Catatonia Commonly Missed, Badly Managed

Catatonic syndrome is a common child and adolescent psychotic disorder that responds well to benzodiazepines, with the addition of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) if there is insufficient response to benzodiazepines.

However, a retrospective study suggests the condition is frequently missed, that these specific interventions are underused, and that the inappropriate use of neuroleptic drugs can precipitate clinical worsening.

Catatonia symptoms are often overlooked or misinterpreted because of the misperception that these symptoms are rare in children.

by Daniel M. Keller, PhD

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