Frequency of neuroleptic malignant syndrome in a large psychiatric hospital in Moscow

B. Spivak*, D. I. Maline, V. N. Kozyrev, R. Mester, S. A. Neduva, R. S. Ravilov, A. Weizman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A ten-year prospective survey of neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) was performed in a major psychiatric hospital (1,510 beds) in Moscow. All inpatients who developed a persistent and severe extrapyramidal rigidity accompanied by fever after exposure to neuroleptic medication were screened for NMS. The diagnosis of NMS was established according to Levenson's criteria and at a later stage all NMS cases were reevaluated using the DSM-IV research criteria. Data on age, gender and psychiatric diagnoses were analyzed. Of the 78,708 inpatients treated with neuroleptic agents, 19 separate patients had an episode of NMS, for a frequency of 0.02%. Mortality rate was 10.5% (2/19 patients). Of the three potential risk factors studied, only young age (≤ 25 years) was significantly associated with an increased frequency of NMS (P < 0.01). The low rate of NMS found here compared to studies in other countries may be due to the stringent demands for NMS diagnosis. More large-scale prospective studies including detailed clinical and laboratory data are needed to clarify these differences and their impact on the prevalence and risk factors of NMS. (C) 2000 Editions scientifiques et medicales.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)330-333
Number of pages4
JournalEuropean Psychiatry
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2000


  • Frequency
  • Mortality rate
  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome
  • Possible risk


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