Research comparing the prescription rates for antipsychotic drugs for children in the U.K. and the U.S. has found rates soaring in both countries. The drugs were prescribed at a rate of 4 per 10,000 children in 1992 but this had increased to 7 per 10,000 by 2005. In the U.S. the rate of prescription increased from 23 per 10,000 in 1996 to 45 per 10,000 in 2001. Most of the drugs were not officially approved for children but they were used to treat autism and attention deficit disorder. Side effects of the drugs can include weight gain and heart problems and there is little long-term evidence that the drugs are safe.
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