Psychotropic Polypharmacy

  • Michelle Cornacchia
  • Priya Chandan


Polypharmacy is a major issue for individuals with intellectual disability. There have been many proposed definitions of polypharmacy, including using five or more medications. Individuals with intellectual disability are at increased risk for polypharmacy given the presence of multiple co-morbidities such as mental health and neurologic conditions. Commonly prescribed medications for patients with intellectual disability include antipsychotics, anti-epileptics, and antidepressants. Common adverse effects of these medications include sedation, insomnia, nausea, constipation, and weight gain. Importantly, there are strategies that can help reduce polypharmacy and its negative effects, including medication reconciliation tools and processes such as the Systematic Tool to Reduce Inappropriate Prescribing (STRIP).


Polypharmacy Psychotropic drugs Intellectual disability 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michelle Cornacchia
    • 1
  • Priya Chandan
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Internal MedicineGeisinger Medical CenterDanvilleUSA
  2. 2.Division of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Department of Neurological SurgeryUniversity of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA

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