Informed consent about APs

I wondered if you got good information about medications before starting, with all the benefits and shorttime and longtime risks. For me there wasnt. I was lied to that ADs had no withdrawals, that APs had barely any side effects and were fully safe, and not informed of the addictiveness of benzos. I think that is stupid. There are risks. In some situations the benefits (or the risks of non-use) are greater than those of medications. But a doctor shouldnt lie. I feel people have a right to honest medication info before starting (or right after being out of psychosis, if communication is impossible on the moment of first use), just as in other fields of medicine.

For me, their lies made me lose my trust in doctors completely and get less med-compliant.

Was there informed consent in your case before starting medications?

  • Yes, there was informed consent
  • There was adequate information, but no consent
  • There was consent without adequate information, so no informed consent
  • There was neither adequate information nor consent

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At the time I started APs I was neither capable of being informed of much or consenting to anything. I’m fortunate that they went ahead and put them me on them anyhow. I would not be as recovered as I am today if they hadn’t.

when they switched me to clozapine they informed me well i think… but i never felt like i had much of a choice.

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@velociraptor , that I understand.

I was capable of having a conversation before starting medication (benzos first, then low dose seroquel as a sleep aid). And not psychotic at all. Only a year later I got psychosis. So I think they had plenty of time to give me some info.

I obviously don’t mean you should sit down a floridly psychotic person and chat about side effects while they are running around their room naked chasing aliens or whatever (as i already wrote). In such a situation you could still talk about that before or after these - in my case - two or three psychotic days.

Did they inform you afterwards?

There is a certain standpoint where the medical authority knows better and the person being treated is not in a position to make medical decisions but the issues are more complicated than that. Usually part of the equation is controlling risk to the community which may or may not exist, risk is always assumed, versus risk to individual health which is downplayed. The individual will always assume the risk in the situation to their health versus the community that will impose the treatment. This is where the communitarian side of things comes in, which a communitarian will have no problems with, but for someone who is more for individual liberty etc. is a sticking point


I understand. Even then, it is good that they informed you well. I think this might vary a lot between countries, doctors.

Yes, I’ve seen that views on this vary a lot. For me personally individual freedom and bodily integrity of myself and others is immensely important. I might have a christian anarchist streak, so I’m quite far on the freedom-side of the spectrum.

Maybe i wasn’t clear enough, but I’m obviously not talking about informing someone in a moment they are deeply psychotic. I’m talking about informing someone while being out of psychosis.

It troubles me that my society finds it unacceptable to chemically castrate an active, convicted pedophile without information and consent on his side. While they find it perfectly normal to not inform me and even lie to me, when I’m (according to doc) not a danger to others.

I can’t see what’s problematic about telling someone what you are doing with their bodies. Either in the moment, or after they have cleared up.


I think the same. It was my fault that I disengaged with services on 20mg Olanzapine, and I had no idea I would put on 35 kgs and be a zombie

It took a couple of years for me to realise, but eventually I learned to advocate for other solutions in way of medication

I look at informed consent as being part of a process of having rights, it should be applied in all cases and if the person is unable to respond sensibly it should be fulfilled at a later time


Yes, that is how I see it as well. I think it is a basic human right.

Of course I don’t expect anyone to give me a three hour lecture on side effects when I’m sitting in a corner being catatonic, mute and unable to eat or drink…

…but I also don’t expect them to lie to me about my own medical situation when I’m in a state as I am now.


There should be standards in place for treatment and of course legal and medical advocacy should play a bigger role but its still a human system so theres no telling if the advocates will be communitarian or deferent to medical authority etc. Its a difficult situation but obviously working to improve treatment and rights is better than accepting any treatment with no or few rights


I think… I’m not sure if it is the same for others… but I feel it would actually improve trust in the medical system and the willingness to follow a doctors advice if the information part of informed consent was respected more.

I’d be much more willing to take medication advice from a doc who is honest, than from a doc whom I know is lying.


The medical professional I use now downplays the effects of the medication at every opportunity. Every side-effect I have he says that the medication doesn’t cause that, but it is clearly listed as a known side-effect in the literature. This is a type of lying, and a way of talking down to someone, and a way of getting a person to doubt themselves etc. Unfortunately this type of treatment only gives you two options 1) accept the abuse or 2) question or deny the person’s authority. In a fundamentally abusive social relationship like this you are essentially entrapped into a situation where you will eventually come into conflict with them.


Sorry you have such a bad doctor. I too see it as abuse. I have had this happen a lot. At first I accepted it and doubted myself. Now I do not. It harms me physically and emotionally. I do not accept to be treated as such and if needed I fight for a different doctor in every possible way I can think of. Though I’ve experienced most of them to be in denial about the less happy effects of their own meds, so it is a little rare to find an honest doctor.


Yep. I thanked them.

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Then I’d count that as adequate info and wouldnt see a problem. :slight_smile:

No one told me how bad the side effects would be except for my therapist after I complained. She was and is very sympathetic. She saw me through all the bad stuff.


My psychiatrist still only says that side effects are only weight gain and sleepiness.
Never talked about withdrawal too

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Whats withdrawal?

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I was never told anything?
I don’t even know what withdrawal effects there are supposed to be?

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