Treatment programs used to cure schizoaffective disorder involves three principal components – Medicine, psychosocial rehabilitation, and psychotherapy. A suitable combination of these three components, with primary focus on recovery management, is by and large thought to be the best cure for individuals suffering from SD or schizoaffective disorder.
The most common medications recommended by the psychiatrists for treating the typical maniac symptoms in schizoaffective disorder patients include neuroleptics and mood stabilizers, such as Valproate semisodium, Lithium salt, and carbamazepine. Medicines to alleviate the acute depression and psychotic symptoms include neuroleptics, such as resperidone, and antidepressants, such as SSRI antidepressants and Lamictal, respectively. These medicines may have unfavorable side effects in patients and hence must be taken only under proper supervision of an accredited psychiatrist.
Medications for Maniac Symptoms:
In order to treat maniac symptoms in a patient with depressive schizoaffective disorder subtype, the best medications include Lithium, Depakote-ER, and Tegretol. Although a mix of different mood stabilizers, such as Lithium salt and carbamazepine, with neuroleptics are highly effective in pacifying the maniac symptoms, their prolonged use may lead to adverse extra pyramidal reactions and confused thinking in many cases. Accordingly, other stabilizers, such as Tegretol and Depakote are preferred over Lithium for treatment of schizoaffective disorder patients. Other rare side effects of these drugs include conditions, such as granulocytopenia, decreased neuroleptics levels in blood, platelet dysfunction, and liver toxicity. Other medicines that can be used for effective treatment of maniac symptoms include calcium-channel inhibitors like Verapamil, and benzodiazepines like Klonopin and Ativan.
Medications for Depression/Psychotic Symptoms:
Depression and other psychotic symptoms of this disorder are treated by neuroleptics combined with antidepressant medications, such as SSRI antidepressants (Zolosoft and Prozac) and Lamictal. However, medicines like Wellbutrin and SNRI antidepressants can lead to mixed episodes. Therefore, they should not be prescribed for such patients. Sleeping pills are prescribed to pacify anxiety and depression. However, their overuse might lead to addiction and increased hallucinations in the individual. Nutritional supplements, such as Omega-3 fatty acids, 5-HTP, St John Wort, and SAM-e, are also very helpful in curing the disorder.
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