Treats agitation (excessive movement, tension, or anxiety) in a person who has schizophrenia.
There may be other brand names for this medicine.
When This Medicine Should Not Be Used
You should not receive this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to ziprasidone, or if you have severe heart failure or have recently had a heart attack. You should not use this medicine if you have a history of heart rhythm problems such as QT prolongation (including congenital long QT syndrome) or if you are using certain medicines that prolong the QT interval in the heart (such as amiodarone, disopyramide, dofetilide, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol, mesoridazine, thioridazine, chlorpromazine, droperidol, pimozide, gatifloxacin, moxifloxacin, sparfloxacin, halofantrine, mefloquine, pentamidine, arsenic trioxide, levomethadyl acetate, dolasetron mesylate, probucol, or tacrolimus). This medicine should not be used in elderly patients who have a mental illness called dementia-related psychosis.
How to Use This Medicine
- Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose and tell you how often it should be given. This medicine is given as a shot into one of your muscles.
- A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this medicine.
- Your doctor will give you a few doses of this medicine until your condition improves, and then switch you to an oral medicine that works the same way. If you have any concerns about this, talk to your doctor.
Drugs and Foods to Avoid
Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are using medicines to lower blood pressure (such as atenolol, lisinopril, metoprolol, quinapril, Accupril®, Cozaar®, Diovan®, Lotrel®, Norvasc®, Toprol®, or Zestril®). Tell your doctor if you are using a diuretic or "water pill" (such as furosemide, Aldactazide®, Aldactone®, Dyazide®, Lasix®, Moduretic®, or Maxzide®), carbamazepine (Carbatrol®, Tegretol®), or ketoconazole (Nizoral®).
- Tell your doctor if you are using levodopa (Dopart®, Larodopa®), bromocriptine (Parlodel®), pramipexole (Mirapex®), ropinirole (Requip®), cabergoline (Dostinex®), or apomorphine (Apokyn®).
- Tell your doctor if you are using any medicines that make you sleepy. These include sleeping pills, cold and allergy medicine, narcotic pain relievers, and sedatives.
- Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
Warnings While Using This Medicine
- Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, blood or bone marrow problems, prolactin-dependent breast cancer, diabetes, trouble with swallowing, or a history of seizures or neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS). Tell your doctor if you have any kind of blood vessel or heart problems, including low blood pressure, heart failure, a low amount of blood, a slow heartbeat, a history of a heart attack or stroke, or low potassium or magnesium levels in your blood. Also, tell your doctor if you have had thoughts of hurting yourself or others.
- This medicine can cause changes in the heart rhythm, such as a condition called QT prolongation. It may change the way your heart beats and cause fainting or serious side effects. Contact your doctor right away if you have any symptoms of heart rhythm problems, such as fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeats.
- Check with your doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms while using this medicine: convulsions (seizures), difficulty with breathing, a fast heartbeat, a high fever, high or low blood pressure, increased sweating, loss of bladder control, severe muscle stiffness, unusually pale skin, or tiredness. These could be symptoms of a serious condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS).
- Tardive dyskinesia (a movement disorder) may occur and may not go away after you stop using the medicine. Check with your doctor right away if you have any of the following symptoms while using this medicine: lip smacking or puckering, puffing of the cheeks, rapid or worm-like movements of the tongue, uncontrolled chewing movements, or uncontrolled movements of the arms and legs.
- This medicine should not be used to treat mental disorders in elderly patients who have dementia. Using this medicine to treat this condition could increase the risk for serious side effects, including death. Some side effects are more likely to happen in elderly people who have memory problems or reduced mental skills. Make sure the doctor knows if the person who will be using this medicine has forgetfulness or confusion related to aging (such as Alzheimer's disease or dementia).
- This medicine may make you dizzy, drowsy, have trouble with thinking, or have trouble with controlling body movements. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert, well-coordinated, or able to think well.
- This medicine may cause an increase in your blood sugar. If you have diabetes, you may need to check your urine or blood sugar more often. Check with your doctor right away if you have increased thirst or increased urination, or if you have any questions.
- This medicine lowers the number of some types of blood cells in your body. Because of this, you may bleed or get infections more easily. To help with these problems, avoid being near people who are sick or have infections. Wash your hands often. Stay away from rough sports or other situations where you could be bruised, cut, or injured. Brush and floss your teeth gently. Be careful when using sharp objects, including razors and fingernail clippers.
- Dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may occur, especially when you get up suddenly from a lying or sitting position. Getting up slowly may help. If this problem continues or gets worse, check with your doctor.
- This medicine may cause you to become overheated more easily than usual. Be careful when exercising, or when you are outdoors in hot or humid weather.
- This medicine may cause some people to be agitated, irritable, or display other abnormal behaviors. It may also cause some people to have suicidal thoughts and tendencies. If you or your caregiver notice any of these side effects, tell your doctor right away.
- Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects.
Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine
Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:
- Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
- Chills, cough, runny or stuffy nose, sore throat, and body aches.
- Dry mouth, increased thirst, muscle cramps, nausea, or vomiting.
- Fast, slow, pounding, or uneven heartbeat.
- Fever, sweating, confusion, or muscle stiffness.
- Increased thirst, hunger, or urination.
- Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting.
- Mood or behavioral changes, or thoughts of hurting yourself or others.
- Numbness, tingling, or burning pain in your hands, arms, legs, or feet.
- Painful, prolonged erection of your penis (in males).
- Problems with balance or walking.
- Red or black stools.
- Severe diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, or stomach pain.
- Skin rash.
- Trouble with swallowing or talking, sticking out of the tongue, or spasm of the neck muscles.
- Twitching or muscle movements you cannot control (often in your face, tongue, or jaw).
- Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness.
If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:
- Anxiety or restlessness.
- Pain where the shot was given.
- Sleepiness or unusual drowsiness.
- Trouble with sleeping.
- Weight gain.
If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088
- Last Reviewed on 06/12/2013
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This page was last updated: June 18, 2013