Clinicians use a measurement tool called the Abnormal Involuntary Movement Scale or AIMS to monitor for the uncontrollable movements that might be medication side effects. The AIMS scale measures the severity of uncontrollable movements in each part of the body. The areas of the body assessed include the face and mouth as well as the arms, legs, and trunk (chest and stomach). The AIMS also rates the patient’s awareness of the movements and the level of impairment that they cause. For example, if the uncontrollable movements keep someone from being able to eat, they would have a high score on this part of the AIMS. Your clinician will administer the AIMS assessment before you begin your medication and at least every 6 months to a year afterwards. If you experience any new body movements or physical discomfort, please let your clinician know right away so that you can be assessed.
Consider downloading the SMI Adviser app on your smartphone. It has features like rating scales (including AIMS) that you can use in real-time.