Movements in never-medicated schizophrenics: A preliminary study

D. S. Fenn, D. Moussaoui, W. F. Hoffman, N. Kadri, B. Bentounssi, A. Tilane, M. Khomeis, D. E. Casey

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43 Scopus citations


Descriptions of schizophrenia dating to the beginning of this century include mention of abnormal movements which are similar to tardive dyskinesia (TD), currently thought to be sequelae of neuroleptic medication. In order to examine the extent to which such movements might appear in the normal course of schizophrenia, we examined a sample of 22 never-medicated DSM-III-R schizophrenics who presented for treatment at a psychiatric center in Casablanca, Morocco. Duration of illness in this sample ranged from 1 to 10 years. Patients were assessed for choreoathetoid movements using the Abnormal Involuntary Movement Scale (AIMS). Videotaped and live examinations were rated by the investigators. Three patients (14%) met research diagnostic criteria for probable SD. Mild movements in one body part (AIMS = 2) were seen in an additional five (23%) patients. The movements were characteristic of TD, although their somatic distribution differed from previous studies. Total AIMS score increased with age and duration of illness (r = 0.64, P < 0.01). These findings suggest that choreoathetoid movements may appear spontaneously in patients with schizophrenia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)206-210
Number of pages5
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1996


  • Neuroleptic drugs
  • Schizophrenia
  • Spontaneous dyskinesia
  • Tardive dyskinesia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology


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