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All about: Fluphenazine Tablets

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Generic Name: Fluphenazine Tablets (floo-FEN-a-zeen)
Brand Name: Generic only. No brands available.

Fluphenazine is used for:

Treating certain mental or mood disorders (eg, schizophrenia). It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Fluphenazine is a phenothiazine. It is not known exactly how it works.

Do NOT use Fluphenazine if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Fluphenazine or similar medicines (eg, phenothiazines)
  • you have known or suspected brain damage, liver damage, or blood or bone marrow problems (eg, low blood platelet levels, low white blood cell count)
  • you have recently taken large amounts of alcohol or CNS depressant medicines, such as barbiturates (eg, phenobarbital) or narcotic pain medicines (eg, codeine)
  • you are taking astemizole, pergolide, or terfenadine

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Fluphenazine:

Some medical conditions may interact with Fluphenazine. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have a history of heart problems, low blood pressure, blood problems, problems with the blood vessels in your brain, liver problems (eg, cirrhosis), kidney problems, enlarged prostate gland, seizures or epilepsy, Parkinson disease, adrenal gland tumor (eg, pheochromocytoma), or Reye syndrome
  • if you have asthma, lung infection, or other lung problems (eg, emphysema); increased pressure in the eyes; or glaucoma; or if you are at risk for glaucoma
  • if you are regularly exposed to extreme heat or phosphorus insecticides
  • if you have a history of alcohol abuse or if you drink more than 3 alcohol-containing drinks per day

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Fluphenazine. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Astemizole, haloperidol, ketolides (eg, telithromycin), macrolide antibiotics (eg, erythromycin), pimozide, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) antidepressants (eg, fluoxetine), or terfenadine because the risk of side effects, such as racing heartbeat, dizziness, fainting, and life-threatening irregular heartbeat leading to unconsciousness, may be increased by Fluphenazine
  • Anticholinergics (eg, atropine) because they may decrease the effectiveness of Fluphenazine
  • Guanethidine, levodopa, or pergolide because their effectiveness may be decreased by Fluphenazine

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Fluphenazine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Fluphenazine:

Use Fluphenazine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Take Fluphenazine by mouth with or without food. If stomach upset occurs, take with food to reduce stomach irritation.
  • Continue to use Fluphenazine even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
  • If you miss a dose of Fluphenazine, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Fluphenazine.

Important safety information:

  • Fluphenazine may cause drowsiness, dizziness, or blurred vision. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Fluphenazine with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
  • Do not drink alcohol or use medicines that may cause drowsiness (eg, sleep aids, muscle relaxers) while you are using Fluphenazine; it may add to their effects. Ask your pharmacist if you have questions about which medicines may cause drowsiness.
  • Alcohol, hot weather, exercise, and fever can increase the risk of dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting. To prevent these effects, sit up or stand slowly, especially in the morning. Sit or lie down at the first sign of any of these effects.
  • Do not become overheated in hot weather or while you are being active; heatstroke may occur.
  • Fluphenazine may cause you to become sunburned more easily. Avoid the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to Fluphenazine. Use a sunscreen or wear protective clothing if you must be outside for more than a short time.
  • Some patients who take Fluphenazine may develop muscle movements that they cannot control. This is more likely to happen in elderly patients, especially women. The chance that this will happen or that it will become permanent is greater in those who take Fluphenazine in higher doses or for a long time. Muscle problems may also occur after short-term treatment with low doses. Tell your doctor at once if you have muscle problems with your arms; legs; or your tongue, face, mouth, or jaw (eg, tongue sticking out, puffing of cheeks, mouth puckering, chewing movements) while taking this medicine.
  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) is a possibly fatal syndrome that can be caused by Fluphenazine. Symptoms may include fever; stiff muscles; confusion; abnormal thinking; fast or irregular heartbeat; and sweating. Contact your doctor at once if you have any of these symptoms.
  • Tell your doctor or dentist that you take Fluphenazine before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
  • Fluphenazine may cause the results of some pregnancy tests to be wrong. Check with your doctor if you have questions or concerns about your pregnancy test results.
  • Lab tests, including liver and kidney function tests, complete blood cell counts, and eye exams, may be performed while you use Fluphenazine. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • Use Fluphenazine with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially dizziness, lightheadedness (especially upon standing), rapid heartbeat, breathing problems, urinary retention, and constipation.
  • Fluphenazine should be used with extreme caution in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using Fluphenazine while pregnant. Fluphenazine is found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Fluphenazine.

If you suddenly stop taking Fluphenazine, especially if you have been taking high doses, you may experience WITHDRAWAL symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, dizziness, and tremors.

Possible side effects of Fluphenazine:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Agitation; bizarre dreams; constipation; dizziness; drowsiness; dry mouth; headache; loss of appetite; nausea; stuffy nose.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); changes in menstrual period; changes in sexual ability; chest pain; dark urine; difficulty swallowing; drooling; fainting; fast or irregular heartbeat; fever, chills, or sore throat; involuntary movements or spasms of the arms, legs, tongue, face, mouth, or jaw; mask-like face; muscle restlessness; prolonged or painful erection; restlessness; seizures; severe constipation; severe or persistent dizziness; shuffling walk; sleeplessness; sore mouth or gums; stiff or rigid muscles; stomach pain; sweating; trouble urinating; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual eye movements or inability to move eyes; unusual mood or mental changes, including lack of response to your surroundings; vision changes; weakness of arms or legs; yellowing of the skin or eyes.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org/findyour.htm), or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include deep sleep or loss of consciousness; muscle spasms; restlessness; seizures; tremors; twitching.

Proper storage of Fluphenazine:

Store Fluphenazine at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C), in a tightly closed container. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Fluphenazine out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Fluphenazine, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Fluphenazine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
  • If using Fluphenazine for an extended period of time, obtain refills before your supply runs out.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Fluphenazine. If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Issue Date: September 5, 2007
Database Edition 07.3.1.003
Copyright © 2007 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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