Tetrabenazine (TBZ) is widely used to treat hyperkinetic movement disorders in adults; however, published experience with the drug in children is limited. Common side effects of TBZ include drowsiness, sedation, weakness, Parkinsonism, depression, and acute akathisia, all of which are reversible with decreased doses. We report here a 7-year-old girl with rheumatic chorea who developed acute akinesia of all four limbs and dysarthria due to TBZ therapy. Withdrawal of the drug led to rapid improvement within 18 hours.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Huntington disease (HD) is a dominantly inherited progressive neurological disease characterized by chorea, an involuntary brief movement that tends to flow between body regions. HD is typically diagnosed based on clinical findings in the setting of a family history and may be confirmed with genetic testing. Predictive testing is available to those at risk, but only experienced clinicians should perform the counseling and testing. Multiple areas of the brain degenerate mainly involving the neurotransmitters dopamine, glutamate, and γ-aminobutyric acid. Although pharmacotherapies theoretically target these neurotransmitters, few well-conducted trials for symptomatic or neuroprotective interventions yielded positive results. Tetrabenazine (TBZ) is a dopamine-depleting agent that may be one of the more effective agents for reducing chorea, although it has a risk of potentially serious adverse effects. Some newer antipsychotic agents, such as olanzapine and aripiprazole, may have adequate efficacy with a more favorable adverse-effect profile than older antipsychotic agents for treating chorea and psychosis. This review will address the epidemiology and diagnosis of HD as background for understanding potential pharmacological treatment options. Because TBZ is the only US Food and Drug Administration-approved medication in the United States for HD, the focus of this review will be on its pharmacology, efficacy, safety, and practical uses. There are no current treatments to change the course of HD, but education and symptomatic therapies can be effective tools for clinicians to use with patients and families affected by HD.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tetrabenazine (TBZ), a presynaptic dopamine depletor and postsynaptic dopamine receptor blocker, is widely used for the treatment of hyperkinetic movement disorders in adults. However, reports of its use in children are limited. We review the efficacy and tolerability of TBZ therapy in 31 children with hyperkinetic movement disorders refractory to other medications. TBZ was effective in reducing the severity of movement disorders resistant to treatment with other medicines. When compared to adult patients, pediatric patients required higher doses. Side effects were similar to the adult population; however, children had a lower incidence of drug-induced Parkinsonism.
Movement Disorders 11/2006; 21(11):1966-72. DOI:10.1002/mds.21063 · 5.68 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Tetrabenazine (TBZ), a catecholamine-depleting agent initially developed for the treatment of schizophrenia, when tested for other indications, has proven to be more useful for the treatment of a variety of hyperkinetic movement disorders. These disorders include neurological diseases characterized by abnormal involuntary movements such as chorea associated with Huntington's disease, tics in Tourette's syndrome, dyskinesias and dystonias in tardive dyskinesia, also primary dystonias and myoclonus. This review will include and discuss studies published during the period of 1960-2006 regarding the clinical efficacy and tolerability of TBZ in Huntington's disease (HD). It will also review the chemistry, pharmacokinetics and dynamics of the drug and its mechanism of action compared to that of reserpine, the only similar compound. This review emphasizes the advantage of TBZ over dopamine-depleting compounds used in the treatment of chorea and reveals its clinical efficacy and side effects.
Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment 11/2007; 3(5):545-51. · 1.74 Impact Factor
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