Microsoft word - haldol 08-2011.doc
The medication Haldol is a typical
neuroleptic. It is used to treat psychosis. Psychosis can be
experienced as disorganized thinking or behavior and unusual perceptions (hearing voices, seeing
things, feeling paranoid). Haldol is also used to treat other clinical situations such as tics and
stuttering or extreme mood instability. Generally these symptoms interfere with your life
Haldol is FDA approved for Schizophrenia and the tics associated with Tourette’s Disorder
Although Haldol can be very helpful, it can cause some side effects that you should know of
before accepting treatment with it. The most common include: drowsiness and sedation;
muscle tension, muscle spasms, tremor and restlessness.
Although these effects generally
occur during initial treatment, some remain throughout treatment and may warrant
discontinuing the medication. Talk with your provider about it.
Recently, neuroleptics have been found to be associated with diabetes and weight gain, high cholesterol, and high triglycerides. These problems can lead to obesity and cardiovascular issues.Though serious, these side effects are uncommon. Nevertheless, it is important to talk to your provider about these issues.
Although very effective at treating symptoms, these potential side effects warrant you watching what you eat, and getting your blood sugar, cholesterol, and triglycerides checked occasionally. Again, Haldol is generally a tolerable medication which works well at helping people restore their lives, but these other issues are serious. Talk to your provider about it.
Haldol is a typical
neuroleptics and so it can cause EPS (ExtraPyramidal Side effects). These
include tremor, muscle stiffness or spasms, abnormal movements of the mouth, tongue,
extremities. These are usually benign and can be treated with side effect medication. Tardive
Dyskinesia (unusual movements of the mouth, tongue, arms) and NMS (high fever, racing heart,
agitation, sweating) although rare, are serious side effects of these typical
The beneficial effect of Haldol can sometimes take 3-5 days to three weeks, sometimes longer. The maximum effect can sometimes take as long as 9-12 months. Generally if no effect is felt after 6 weeks, then a different medication or different dosage should be considered. The usual dosage range is 5 mg to 15 mg a day.
Haldol is generally safe with other medications. But as with all medications, please let your provider know if you are engaged in other treatments. There are no dietary restrictions.
There are supplemental methods to improve life which include:
-good sleep habits
-good eating habits
-visiting with family or friends
Although important, these methods alone cannot restore clear thinking.
If you have further questions about this medication, please ask your medical provider or your pharmacist.
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