Seroquel and Anger


Seroquel and Anger

Children with bipolar disorder often have the distinct feature of raging when they become overwhelmed, told no, or blocked from acquiring something they are focused on. Frequently this is referred to as mission mode.

Seroquel and anger : Why does it work?

Often doctors that I work with in Charlotte will prescribe Seroquel not only for mood stabilization but to target some of the symptoms of anger that seem unique in children. Demetrius Papolos talked with several professionals about this and they speculate that the newer antipsychotics better address symptom logy that is unique to children. These symptoms include rapid cycling rages intense irritability, agitation and tremendous hostility. (Papolos D. MD., 1999-2000)

Bipolar is a complicated brain disorder. The brain in people who have bipolar disorder has an imbalance or excess of certain levels of neurotransmitters that influence how we behave and feel. Medication such as Seroquel alter the neurotransmitters and in doing so help with the parts of the brain that aren’t working correctly. Doctors and scientists do not fully understand how Seroquel works. However, the way Seroquel works on anger is similar to the way all mood stabilizers and antipsychotics work on the brain.

Seroquel and Anger: What Does the Anger Look Like in Children?

Some children I work with have rages that are protracted and consist of incredible levels of physical violence with a clear intention to do harm to self and others and/or property. Children as young as three will curse violently and utter words that they would never conceive of in a normal state. Children with bipolar who are raging are often described as appearing to be possessed by a demon. At times they appear to have lost their memory when asked about the incident. Parents report they are unable to speak to or process with their children during these rages.

Sometimes Seroquel and other atypical antipsychotics are effective in treating these symptoms. When medication is working, the rages decrease in frequency and duration, the children can be redirected more easily, and at times, the rages themselves can be avoided.

Seroquel and Anger: Side Effects

The parents I work with most frequently report the side effect of weight gain or unwanted sedation with Seroquel. Some research suggests that compared to other atypical antipsychotics, Seroquel actually causes less weight gain. (Twaites, June 2007)

One thing that I have repeatedly observed, is that you never really know how a child is going to react to a medication, so there may be reactions that are not expected or predictable.

Some of the side effects the AstraZeneca website reports(AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals, 2009)are listed below:

1. Diabetes

2. High cholesterol

3. Tardive Dyskenisia (TD) A sometimes irreverable movement disorder

4. Neuro Malignant Syndrome( NMS) which is described on the website as a potentially fatal condition marked by fever confusion and muscle rigidity.

NMS and TD are reported to be much less common with seroquel than some of the older antipsychotics (Papolos D. MD., 1999-2000).

Seroquel and Anger: What to do to Best Protect Your Child

If you are a concerned parent with a child who has bipolar disorder and has been prescribed Seroquel or another medication, ask your doctor a series of questions about all of the possible side effects.

I have seen psychiatrists repeatedly fail to screen regularly for possible complications due to medications, as well as fail to warn parents about the possible side effects.

Make sure you give your doctor a thorough medical history. Don't depend on them to ask the right questions. Watch your child carefully for any changes in behavior or physical symptoms. Carefully monitor how their behavior is improving by keeping very good details of the symptoms that you are targeting.

Finally if your child is harmed by Seroquel find an attorney who can help you. Medical Disclaimer


Medical information obtained from this website is not intended as a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you have a problem, you should consult a health care provider.


AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals. (2009). Seroquel. Retrieved May 1, 2009, from

Olson, P. M. (June 2005;21). Bipolar Disorder in School-Age Children. The Journal of School Nursing , 152-157.

Papolos D. MD., P. J. (1999-2000). Atypical AntipsychoticsTheir Emerging Role in the Treatment of Early-Onset Bipolar Disorder. Retrieved May 1, 2009, from

Twaites, B. R. (June 2007;21). THe safety of Quetiapine:results of a post marketing surveillance study on 1728 patients in England. J Psychopharmacol , 392-399.

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Medical information obtained from this website is not intended as a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you have a problem, you should consult a healthcare provider.