The subjective and motor phenomena of neuroleptic-induced akathisia were studied in two different populations of psychiatric patients. Thirty nine (41%) of 95 patients attending community psychiatric centres and psychiatric day hospitals experienced a compulsion to move about, and 52 (55%) complained of restlessness of the body. Of 842 psychiatric in-patients 159 found to have marked hyperkinesis were divided into three groups; group 1 with motor restlessness, and a subjective desire to move about or marching on the spot (27 patients), group 2 with choreo-athetotic movements and motor restlessness (79 patients) and an indeterminate group 3 (53), bearing more similarities to group 1 than group 2. Motor disturbances associated with akathisia were repeated leg crossing, swinging of one leg, lateral knee movements, sliding of the feet and rapid walking.
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