Pharmacological Distinctions

Despite differences in potency, all commonly used an-tipsychotic drugs have approximately equal efficacy in equivalent doses. However, individual patients may be more responsive to one drug class than another. Prototype or representative members of the antipsy-chotics are arranged in decreasing order of potency in Table 34.1. While the sedative and autonomic effects of the high-potency drugs are less prominent, these agents are more likely to cause acute extrapyramidal symptoms. Generally, these trends are reversed as potency decreases.

All antipsychotics block D2-receptors, but the degree of blockade in relation to actions on other receptors varies greatly. For example, chlorpromazine and

TABLE 34.1 Pharmacological Distinctions Among Representative Antipsychotic Drugs

Side Effects

Equivalent Oral Extrapyramidal

Side Effects

Equivalent Oral Extrapyramidal


Chemical Classification

Dose (mg)






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