Tardive dyskinesia – Definition
Tardive dyskinesia (TD) is a neurologic syndrome. It results from prolonged use of neuroleptic drugs (also called antipsychotic drugs). This class of drugs is used to treat psychiatric conditions, like schizophrenia. TD consists of:
- Abnormal twisting movements
- Abnormal postures due to sustained muscle contractions
Tardive dyskinesia – Causes
It is unclear exactly why TD develops. Long-term use of neuroleptic drugs can cause changes in the chemistry in the brain that lead to the symptoms. Nerve cells may also become overly sensitive to certain substances, such as neurotransmitters in the brain. Not everyone who takes these drugs develops TD.