This medicine contains the active ingredient clozapine which belongs to a group of medicines called atypical antipsychotics. These medicines affect the chemical balance in the brain by restoring it. Clozapine is prescribed for the treatment of schizophrenia (you see, hear, feel things that do not exist, have strange and frightening thoughts, you are depressed and anxious, you cannot differentiate between fiction and reality), and for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease when no other medicines suited your needs.
Is Clozapine suitable for me?
Clozapine is not suitable for everyone. Do not use it
- if you have an allergy (hypersensitivity) to clozapine or any other ingredient of this medicine
- if you have bone marrow disorders (it does not make enough blood cells)
- if you have uncontrolled epilepsy (fits or seizures)
- if you have acute mental illness caused by alcohol, medicines or other substances
- if you have poisoning caused by other medicines
- if you have circulatory collapse
- if you have brain disorders
- if you have serious kidney disease
- if you have heart disease (such as myocarditis, pericarditis or cardiomyopathy)
- if you have active liver disease or liver failure
- if you have paralytic ileus (a disorder of the small intestine)
In particular, you must tell the doctor if you have or have ever had:
- low number of white blood cells (leukopenia, neutropenia, granulocytopenia, agranulocytosis)
- high number of white blood cells called eosinophil granulocytes (eosinophilia)
- low number of platelets in the blood (thrombocytopenia)
- pericarditis or pericardial effusion (inflammation of the membranes around the heart)
- orthostatic hypotension (a fall in blood pressure on standing up)
- epilepsy or fits
- prostate problems or difficulty in urinating
- any heart, kidney or liver disease
- blood clots
- large intestine diseases
- glaucoma (raised pressure in the eye)
- constipation, paralytic ileus,
- disease of the large bowel
- operations on the abdomen
- neuroleptic malignant syndrome
Clozapine interacts with other medicines. It is most important that you tell the doctor all the medications and herbal supplements that you are currently taking.
See the package leaflet for a complete list of possible contraindications and warnings.
How should I take Clozapine?
This medicine is available in form of a tablet.
You should take clozapine exactly as instructed by your doctor or pharmacist.
- For the treatment of schizophrenia, the usual starting dose is 12,5 mg taken 1 or 2 times a day on the first day of the treatment. The usual dose on the second day is 25 mg. The usual maintenance dose is between 200 and 450 mg per day. The maximum dose is 900 mg.
- For the treatment of thought disturbances caused by Parkinson’s disease, the usual starting dose is 12,5 mg taken once a day. The usual maintenance dose is between 25 and 37,5 mg. The maximum dose is 100 mg per day.
Do not use more of it, do not use it more often, or do not use it for a longer time than your doctor instructed. Also, this medicine works best if there is a constant amount in the blood. To help keep this amount constant, do not miss any doses and take the medicine at the same time each day. Do not take two doses together if you miss a dose.
Read the information leaflet provided with your medication for additional information. Talk to your doctor if you have any additional questions.
What are Clozapine side effects?
Like all medicines clozapine can cause side effects, including:
- low level of white blood cells (leukopenia)
- high level of white blood cells (leukocytosis)
- high level of a specific type of white blood cell (eosinophilia)
- weight gain
- blurred vision
- trembling, stiffness
- abnormal movements
- inability to initiate movement
- inability to remain motionless
- high blood pressure
- sudden loss of consciousness
- nausea (feeling sick), vomiting (being sick)
- loss of appetite
- dry mouth
- loss of bladder control
- difficulty in passing urine
- raised body temperature
- speech disorders
- low level of red blood cells (anemia)
- agitation, confusion
- circulatory collapse
- irregular heartbeat
- inflammation of the heart muscle (myocarditis) or the membrane surrounding the heart muscle (pericarditis)
- fluid collection around the heart (pericardial effusion)
- difficulty in swallowing
- respiratory tract infection and pneumonia
- high level of sugar in the blood
- diabetes mellitus
- blood clot in the lungs
Consult a doctor if the side effects are severe. See the package leaflet for a complete list of side effects.