Rabbit Syndrome

Rabbit syndrome is a rare form of extra pyramidal side effect of antipsychotic drugs in which peri-oral tremors occur at a rate of approximately 5 Hz.

Causes of Rabbit Syndrome

Rabbit syndrome is a movement disorder that is associated with long-term exposure to neuroleptic medications. Of particular interest and importance is the risk of rabbit syndrome with exposure to the newer atypical antipsychotics.

Symptoms of Rabbit Syndrome

Rabbit syndrome is characterized by involuntary, fine, rhythmic motions of the mouth along a vertical plane, without involvement of the tongue, and resembling the chewing movements of a rabbit.

Treatment of Rabbit Syndrome

  • Rabbit syndrome can be treated with anticholinergic drugs.

  • It generally disappears within a few days of treatment but may re-emerge after anticholinergic treatment is stopped.

  • Another treatment strategy is to switch the patient to an atypical antipsychotic with high anti-cholinergic properties.

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