Cognitive Effects of Risperidone in Children with Autism and Irritable Behavior

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Title: Cognitive Effects of Risperidone in Children with Autism and Irritable Behavior
Creators: Aman, Michael G.; Hollway, Jill A.; McDougle, Christopher J.; Scahill, Lawrence; Tierney, Elaine; McCracken, James T.; Arnold, L. Eugene; Vitiello, Benedetto; Ritz, Louise; Gavaletz, Allison; Cronin, Pegeen; Swiezy, Naomi; Wheeler, Courtney; Koenig, Kathleen; Ghuman, Jaswinder K.; Posey, David J.
Issue Date: 2008
Publisher: Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. Publishers
Citation: Michael G. Aman et al, "Cognitive Effects of Risperidone in Children with Autism and Irritable Behavior," Journal of Child and Adolescent Psychopharmacology 18, no. 3 (2008), doi:10.1089/cap.2007.0133
DOI: 10.1089/cap.2007.0133
Abstract: Objective: The objective of this research was to explore the effects of risperidone on cognitive processes in children with autism and irritable behavior. Method: Thirty-eight children, ages 5-17 years with autism and severe behavioral disturbance, were randomly assigned to risperidone (0.5 to 3.5 mg/day) or placebo for 8 weeks. This sample of 38 was a subset of 101 subjects who participated in the clinical trial; 63 were unable to perform the cognitive tasks. A double-blind placebo-controlled parallel groups design was used. Dependent measures included tests of sustained attention, verbal learning, hand-eye coordination, and spatial memory assessed before, during, and after the 8-week treatment. Changes in performance were compared by repeated measures ANOVA. Results: Twenty-nine boys and 9 girls with autism and severe behavioral disturbance and a mental age ≥18 months completed the cognitive part of the study. No decline in performance occurred with risperidone. Performance on a cancellation task (number of correct detections) and a verbal learning task (word recognition) was better on risperidone than on placebo (without correction for multiplicity). Equivocal improvement also occurred on a spatial memory task. There were no significant differences between treatment conditions on the Purdue Pegboard (hand-eye coordination) task or the Analog Classroom Task (timed math test). Conclusion: Risperidone given to children with autism at doses up to 3.5 mg for up to 8 weeks appears to have no detrimental effect on cognitive performance.
ISSN: 1557-8992
Rights: © 2008 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. Publishers
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