Clozapine, atypical antipsychotics, and the benefits of fast-off D2 dopamine receptor antagonism
The atypical antipsychotic agents clozapine and risperidone bring new insight into the care and treatment of patients with schizophrenia. Since their introduction, several names (e.g., novel, atypical, serotonergic-dopaminergic antagonist) have been used to describe the nature of these compounds. The agents are unique in a number of ways compared with conventional neuroleptics. In particular, they have the distinction of having achieved separation between the effective dosage and the dosage that causes extrapyramidal symptoms, which has significant implications for patient care. On the whole, the advent of atypical agents is changing treatment protocols for patients with schizophrenia.