Risperidone-induced hepatotoxicity in children and adolescents? A chart review study

Eva Szigethy, Max Wiznitzer, Lisa A. Branicky, Kathleen Maxwell, Robert L. Findling

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Risperidone is an atypical antipsychotic drug that has been used in the treatment of numerous psychiatric disorders in children and adolescents. The question of whether risperidone-induced weight gain is associated with steatohepatitis has recently been raised. The purpose of this chart review was to ascertain: (1) the rate of liver dysfunction observed during risperidone treatment in children and adolescents; and (2) the clinical factors associated with liver dysfunction. For purposes of this chart review study, abnormal liver function was defined by serum transaminase or bilirubin values falling outside the normal laboratory ranges. Chart reviews were completed on 38 youths with ages ranging from 5-17 years with a variety of psychiatric diagnoses. The mean length of risperidone treatment was 15.2 months at a mean dose of 2.5 mg/day. It was found that 37 of the 38 youths treated with risperidone had no liver enzyme abnormalities at the end of study. One subject had an alanine aminotransferase (ALT) level of 46 U/L which was 7 U/L above the upper limit of normal for this laboratory test. This isolated value was not considered clinically significant. These data were noted in spite of weight gain and the use of numerous concomitant psychotropic medications. These findings suggest that risperidone in short term treatment does not commonly lead to evidence of abnormal liver function at therapeutic doses in children and adolescents. Larger-scale, prospective studies are needed in order to confirm these findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)93-98
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of child and adolescent psychopharmacology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 1 1999
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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