The Clozapine is used to treat severe forms of schizophrenia and to reduce the risk of suicide in people with schizophrenia, or similar disorders.
What is Clozapine?
Clozapine is an antipsychotic drug : it acts by changing the activity of certain molecules at the brain level.
How is Clozapine taken?
Typically Clozapine is taken orally.
Side effects of Clozapine
During treatment with Clozapine, very serious infections can be contracted. For this reason it is important to contact a doctor immediately in case of:
- sudden weakness
- feeling of being sick
- sore throat
- muscle pain
- flu-like symptoms
The drug may also increase the risk of death in the elderly with dementia-related disorders.
Other possible adverse effects of Clozapine include:
- slow or fast heart beat
- weight gain
- dry mouth
- increased salivation
- clouded view
It is important to seek medical help immediately in case of:
- breathing difficulties
- swelling of the face, lips, tongue or throat
- sores in the mouth
- swollen gums
- difficulty swallowing
- headache with chest pain and severe dizziness, heavy heart beat or chest discomfort
- feeling faint
- sudden cough , rapid breathing, blood in the sputum
- sense of tension in the neck or jaw
- tics or uncontrollable movements of eyes, lips, tongue, face, arms or legs
- swelling, rapid weight gain or decreased urine
- signs of inflammation: bruising or bleeding, tingling or numbness, muscle weakness, stomach pain, jaundice, chest pain, coughing, difficulty breathing
During treatment with Clozapine it is important to undergo frequent blood tests because of the risk of serious infections.
Before you start taking the drug, it is important to tell your doctor:
- any allergies to the active substance , to its excipients or to any other drug or food;
- the other medicines, medicinal products and supplements you are taking, in particular carbamazepine, droperidol, methadone, antibiotics, antidepressants, antimalarials, antiarrhythmics and psychotropic drugs;
- if you suffer (or have suffered) from cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, long QT (even in case of family history), heart attack , stroke and mini stroke, electrolyte imbalances (e.g. low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood), convulsions , head injuries, brain tumors, diabetes or risk factors for diabetes, cholesterol or high triglycerides, paralytic ileus, kidney or liver disease, prostatic hypertrophy, urination disorders, glaucoma, malnutrition or dehydration;
- if you are a smoker;
- if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.