What is this medication?
First Generation (Typical) Antipsychotic; Phenothiazine Derivative
Indicated for treatment of schizophrenia.
“ALERT: US Boxed Warning
Increased mortality in elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis:
Elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis treated with antipsychotic drugs are at an increased risk of death. Analyses of 17 placebo-controlled trials (modal duration of 10 weeks), largely in patients taking atypical antipsychotic drugs, revealed a risk of death in drug-treated patients between 1.6 and 1.7 times the risk of death in placebo-treated patients. Over the course of a typical 10-week controlled trial, the rate of death in drug-treated patients was approximately 4.5%, compared to a rate of approximately 2.6% in the placebo group. Although the causes of death were varied, most of the deaths appeared to be either cardiovascular (eg, heart failure, sudden death) or infectious (eg, pneumonia) in nature. Observational studies suggest that, similar to atypical antipsychotic drugs, treatment with conventional antipsychotic drugs may increase mortality. The extent to which the findings of increased mortality in observational studies may be attributed to the antipsychotic drug as opposed to some characteristic(s) of the patients is not clear. Trifluoperazine is not approved for the treatment of patients with dementia-related psychosis.”
How does this medication work?
Trifluoperazine is a piperazine phenothiazine antipsychotic which blocks dopamine, subtype 2 (D2), receptors in mesolimbocortical and nigrostriatal areas of the brain
How should I take this medication?
Oral: Initial: 2 to 5 mg twice daily titrate dose gradually based on response and tolerability; some patients require up to 50mg/day for adequate response
How to Take: Follow instructions provided by physician/pharmacy label, take consistently at same times each day unless otherwise directed, store at room temperature. May be taken with food to decrease GI upset and do not take within 2 hours of any antacids.
Gradual dose reduction is advised to avoid withdrawal symptoms (ie, insomnia, headache, GI symptoms) unless discontinuation is due to significant adverse effects.
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Before starting Trifluoperazine make sure your physician is aware of any allergies or medications you currently take, if you have liver disease, blood dyscrasias, bone marrow suppression, cardiovascular disease, dementia, a seizure disorder, are pregnant, or breastfeeding. Trifluoperazine use has been associated with rare but serious adverse events such as changes in cardiac conduction resulting in life-threatening arrhythmias, anticholinergic effects (i.e. constipation, dry mouth and eyes, urinary retention, blurred vision), blood dyscrasias (i.e. leukopenia, neutropenia and agranulocytosis), central nervous system depression, esophageal dysmotility, extrapyramidal symptoms (i.e acute dystonic reactions, akathisia, tardive dyskinesia), hyperprolactinemia, hepatic effects, hypotension, neuroleptic malignant syndrome, ocular effects, orthostatic hypotension, and issues with temperature regulation.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose of medication, try to take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, take only that scheduled dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
How should I store this medication?
Keep out of the reach of children at all times. Store at room temperature, 59 to 86° F (15 to 30° C). Protect from light. Keep the container tightly closed. Properly dispose of any unused medication after the expiration date.
What are the possible side effects of using this medication?
ECG abnormality (non-specific QT changes), hypotension, orthostatic hypotension, decreased seizure threshold, dizziness, disruption of body temperature regulation, extrapyramidal reaction (akathisia, dystonia, Parkinsonian-like syndrome, tardive dyskinesia), headache, neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS), skin discoloration (blue-gray), skin photosensitivity (includes increased sensitivity to sun), skin rash, change in libido, change in menstrual flow, galactorrhea, gynecomastia, hyperglycemia, hypoglycemia, weight gain, constipation, nausea, stomach pain, vomiting, xerostomia, difficulty in micturition, ejaculatory disorder, lactation, mastalgia, priapism, urinary retention, agranulocytosis, aplastic anemia, eosinophilia, hemolytic anemia, immune thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, pancytopenia, cholestatic jaundice, hepatotoxicity, tremor, nasal congestion, corneal changes, lens disease, retinitis pigmentosa
The frequency of side effects has not been defined.
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