‘Major’ tranquillisers are drugs more commonly used in the treatment of severe mental illness.
The best known are Largactil, Melleril and Stelazine. The major tranquillisers may be of value, particularly aiding the process of withdrawal from narcotic drugs and also for those where agitation is severe when associated with severe pain.
Such medications suffer from the fact that they occasionally cause a particularly unpleasant side-effect where the body develops uncontrollable muscular twitching — a condition known as tardive dyskinesia. This condition can be extremely troublesome and can prove very difficult to control. It sometimes develops after relatively short courses of the medication and in relatively small doses.
This therefore limits the use of such medications in the treatment of all but the severest forms of chronic pain.