Akathisia is a movement disorder characterized by a feeling of inner restlessness and an inability to sit still. It is most commonly a side effect of certain medications, notably antipsychotic drugs. Akathisia can be distressing and may contribute to medication non-compliance.

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Akathisia FAQ


What is akathisia?

Akathisia is a movement disorder that involves a constant urge to move and restlessness.

What causes akathisia?

It is commonly a side effect of certain medications, particularly antipsychotic drugs.

How is akathisia diagnosed?

Diagnosis is based on the patient's symptoms, medical history, and the exclusion of other conditions.

Can akathisia go away on its own?

In some cases, it may resolve if the causative medication is discontinued or the dosage adjusted.

What are the common symptoms of akathisia?

Restlessness, fidgety movements, pacing, and a constant need to keep moving are typical symptoms.

Are there medications to help with akathisia?

Yes, certain medications such as beta blockers and anticholinergic drugs can be used to manage the symptoms of akathisia.

Can akathisia be mistaken for anxiety?

The restlessness in akathisia might be mistaken for anxiety, but it is a distinct movement disorder.

Is akathisia reversible?

Akathisia can be reversible if the underlying cause, such as medication, is addressed and managed.

How long does akathisia last?

The duration of akathisia can vary, but it may persist as long as the causative medication is used.

Can akathisia affect sleep?

Yes, akathisia can lead to disrupted sleep patterns due to the restlessness and constant need to move.

Can akathisia cause agitation?

The restlessness and inner turmoil associated with akathisia can lead to feelings of agitation.

What should I do if I experience akathisia symptoms?

Seek medical attention to address the underlying cause and find suitable management options for your symptoms.

Is akathisia a rare condition?

It is not considered rare, especially as it is a known side effect of certain medications.

Can akathisia lead to non-compliance with medications?

The distress caused by akathisia may contribute to non-compliance with medications, especially if the discomfort outweighs the perceived benefit.

Are there support groups for akathisia patients?

Support groups and online forums can provide valuable insights and support for individuals experiencing akathisia and its effects.

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