Risperdal is a drug that is licensed to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and irritability associated with autism. The medication works partly by blocking or lessening the effects of several chemicals in the brain. It comes in various forms, including a tablet, orally disintegrating tablets, a liquid, and as an injection. Some of the more common side effects seen with Risperdal include insomnia, anxiety, and an increased appetite.
What Is Risperdal?Risperdal® (risperidone) is a prescription medication that is used to treat the following conditions:
How Does Risperdal Work?Risperdal belongs to a group of medications called atypical (or second-generation) antipsychotic medications. It is not entirely known how the drug works for the treatment of schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. However, it is known to block or lessen the effects of several chemicals in the brain. These chemicals (such as dopamine and serotonin) may be elevated in people with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder (also known as manic depression), or autism.
However, Risperdal is not a cure for these conditions -- it only helps to control the symptoms (see Symptoms of Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder Symptoms, or Autism Symptoms).