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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter September 22, 2016

Blepharospasm: an uncommon adverse effect caused by long-term administration of olanzapine

  • Tarun Arora , Vikas Maharshi EMAIL logo , Harmeet S. Rehan and Pravesh Nagar



Blepharospasm is one of the components of drug-induced Meige’s syndrome which is reported to be caused by typical antipsychotics. Reports of blepharospasm or Meige’s syndrome caused by atypical antipsychotics are rare.


A 30-year-old female patient presented to psychiatry out patient department (OPD) with chief complaints of inability to keep her eyes open for long and excessive blinking for 2 months, irritation of eyes, watery discharge from eyes and photophobia for last 1 month. The patient had been taking olanzapine 10 mg, sertraline 100 mg and divalproex sodium 500 mg per orally on once a day basis for the management of major depressive disorder with psychotic features for last 6 months. Routine blood analysis, thyroid function, EEG, MRI, lipid profile did not reveal any abnormality. Ocular examination was also within normal limits. Olanzapine was suspected as a culprit for the above symptoms of patient, so it was replaced with quetiapine 25 mg/day. Patient showed partial recovery of symptoms within 1 week and complete recovery within 2 months of stopping olanzapine. Causality of olanzapine-induced blepharospasm as per WHO-UMC scale was probable.


Olanzapine (atypical antipsychotics) should also be kept in the list of suspected drugs causing blepharospasm in psychotic patients on treatment although further similar evidences from observational studies and/or reports are needed to establish the causal relationship.

Corresponding author: Dr. Vikas Maharshi, Department of Pharmacology, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India, Phone: +919716315929


We are thankful to Dr. Gagan Hans (Senior Resident) who helped us get this rare case from outpatient clinic of psychiatry department of this hospital.

  1. Author contributions: All the authors have accepted responsibility for the entire content of this submitted manuscript and approved submission.

  2. Research funding: None declared.

  3. Employment or leadership: None declared.

  4. Honorarium: None declared.

  5. Competing interests: The funding organization(s) played no role in the study design; in the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; or in the decision to submit the report for publication.


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Received: 2016-3-19
Accepted: 2016-7-23
Published Online: 2016-9-22
Published in Print: 2017-1-1

©2017 Walter de Gruyter GmbH, Berlin/Boston

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