DNA can help guide your choice of life-saving drugs

Put yourself in the shoes of a psychiatrist. You just diagnosed a person with schizophrenia, and you can prescribe any number of antipsychotic drugs, all of which can cause serious side effects. You know that older drugs, such as haloperidol, work well, but a third of all schizophrenia patients who take it suffer from Parkinsonian-like symptoms, such as tremors, involuntary spasms, and uncontrollable facial movements. You also know that those side effects are permanent in about half the people who experience them. In other words, you could be prescribed a drug that causes permanent brain damage.

Choosing the right drug is difficult, but you have to choose one. Letting the patient go without medication is not an option.

What do you do?

Read the full, original story: The genetics of drug tolerance

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