My mom was recently prescribed Haloperidol as a sleep aid....

Elizabetht asked...

My mom was recently prescribed Haloperidol as a sleep aid. She is suffering from dementia. Does anyone know of any possible side effect that may occur if this drug is taken?

Expert Answer

Ladislav Volicer, M.D., Ph.D., is recognized as an international expert on advanced dementia care. He is a courtesy full professor at the School of Aging Studies, University of South Florida, Tampa, and visiting professor at the Third Medical Faculty, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic. Twenty-five years ago, he established one of the first dementia special care units.

Haloperidol is not a medication that promotes sleep although it may cause sedation in high doses. It can cause rigidity and increases the risk of a stroke and sudden death. Haloperidol should not be prescribed unless your mother has delusions and/or hallucinations that are disturbing her. Even if she does, there are some other medications that have less side effects than haloperidol.