A recent study by the National Institute of Mental Health indicated that widely prescribed anti-psychotic drugs do not help most Alzheimer’s patients with delusions and aggression and are not worth the risk of sudden death and other side effects. The study tested Zyprexa, Risperdal and Seroquel – newer drugs developed for schizophrenia that doctors are free to prescribe for any use. These drugs are commonly administered to nursing home residents. All three of the drugs carry a strong warning that they increase the risk of death for elderly people with dementia related psychotic symptoms. Yet, roughly one-quarter of nursing home patients are on these drugs. Residents are often put on these types of medications and not particularly monitored and treated for indefinite periods of time. It is strongly advised that any family member with a loved one in a nursing home speak with the loved one’s physician at the nursing home and understand the pros and cons of administering these medications.