Call Today for a FREE Confidential Case Review
Toll-Free 24/7 (866) 920-0753

Risperdal Side Effects


The anti-psychotic drug Risperdal (risperidone) become controversial after evidence emerged that Johnson & Johnson improperly marketed it to children, the elderly, and people with intellectual disabilities. Hundreds of lawsuits have been filed by young men who took Risperdal as children and developed severe side effects, such as gynecomastia (breast growth), type-2 diabetes, severe weight gain, and more.

Risperdal Side Effects in Children

Risperdal can have very severe side effects in children. One side effect is medically serious weight gain, which can cause physical disfigurement, long-lasting health problems, and increase the risk of type-2 diabetes. Weight gain can also exacerbate another side effect, gynecomastia (male breast growth), which occurs because Risperdal increases levels of the pregnancy hormone prolactin. Gynecomastia can also be physically disfiguring, emotionally traumatic, and may require surgery.

Serious Side Effects

The National Institute of Health (NIH) resource Risperidone: MedlinePlus Drug Information warns that Risperdal can cause serious side effects that need to be evaluated by a medical professional. These side effects include:

  • fever
  • muscle stiffness
  • confusion
  • fast or irregular pulse
  • sweating
  • unusual movements of your face or body that you cannot control
  • faintness
  • seizures
  • slow movements or shuffling walk
  • rash
  • hives
  • itching
  • difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • painful erection of the penis that lasts for hours (priapism)

Less Serious Side Effects

The following side effects of Risperdal are less serious, but if they are severe or persistent, a doctor should be contacted:

  • drowsiness
  • dizziness
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • heartburn
  • dry mouth
  • increased saliva
  • increased appetite
  • weight gain
  • stomach pain
  • anxiety
  • agitation
  • restlessness
  • dreaming more than usual
  • difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • decreased sexual interest or ability
  • breastmilk production
  • vision problems
  • muscle or joint pain
  • dry or discolored skin
  • difficulty urinating

Pregnancy Side Effects

If you get pregnant while taking Risperdal, tell your doctor immediately. Risperdal is classified as “Pregnancy Category C,” which means that it can potentially harm a developing fetus, but doctors may still prescribe it to a pregnant woman if the benefits justify the risk. Third-trimester exposure to anti-psychotic drugs like Risperdal is associated with reports of agitation, hypertonia, hypotonia, tremor, somnolence, respiratory distress, and feeding disorders.

Withdrawal Side Effects

Patients on long-term treatment who suddenly discontinue Risperdal may experience withdrawal side effects. To avoid these risks, patients should stop Risperdal gradually and be monitored closely for rapid relapse or acute withdrawal symptoms, which may include:

  • Sleeplessness for several days
  • Nausea
  • Light-headedness
  • Nervousness
  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Anxiety
  • And more


Free Case Evaluation

The Schmidt Firm, PLLC has been recognized as one of the nation’s leading plaintiffs' law firms and handles cases in all 50 states. We are very proud of our legal achievements, but equally self-respecting of our firm's reputation for providing personal attention to each and every client we represent.

No matter what type of case you have, you may contact us with confidence by filling out the email contact form below or calling us directly by dialing toll free 24 hrs/day (866) 920-0753.