Things to look out for Where can I get further information ? Sore throat, fever, flu like symptoms. Please tell your doctor. An extra blood test If you wish to know more about clozapine may be taken to check that your white cells are healthy. Paracetamol can be taken. Ask your pharmacist about other medicines. as a treatment, please speak to your prescribing doctor or support worker. The Clozapine with specialist Mental Health Pharmacist can Weight gain. Clozapine treatment is likely to lead to some also be asked to come and answer your questions. There are other information Confidence weight gain. Healthy eating with a good sheets available on clozapine. amount of fibre can help this. Do ask for further advice and support if you feel this If you would like to know more about would be helpful. Seizures and Fits schizophrenia and perhaps meet others Clozapine is used when other who are in similar circumstances, then the antipsychotics have not helped. These are rare but can occur with high addresses below may be of some help to doses. Please see your doctor if you you. develop any unusual twitching or jerking. Clozapine consistently achieves Fits can be treated very easily with rethink [formerly National Schizophrenia better results than other anticonvulsant medication such as sodium Fellowship] antipsychotics. valproate. (Epilim) 28 Castle Street Driving Kingston upon Thames Surrey KT1 2SS Commitment to clozapine involves If you find that clozapine makes you feel Tel: 0845 456 0455 (Administration) having regular blood tests. drowsy, do not drive or use machines. 0208 974 6814 (Advice line - part time hours) Drinking alcohol in small amounts is safe but it will make you much more sleepy. SANE No blood test - no clozapine is for First floor, Cityside House your safety. 40 Adler Street London E1 1EE How long will I take the tablets for ? Tel: 0207 375 1002 (Administration) If clozapine works for you it is likely to be a 0845 7678 000 (SANELINE 12noon –2am) Many people who take clozapine long term treatment. If clozapine has not www. sane.org.uk are able to achieve much more. helped by 6 months to 1 year, it is likely to be gradually stopped. MIND If there is a problem with your blood results, 15 - 19 Broadway clozapine will be stopped quickly for safety London E15 4BQ reasons. Clozapine is not a tranquilliser Tel: 0208 519 2122 Info line tel. 0845 766 0163 and is not addictive. www. mind.org.uk Pregnancy and Breastfeeding This leaflet has been produced by the Getting the best from your If you are thinking of starting a family or Worcestershire Mental Health Partnership NHS clozapine medication wish to breastfeed, please discuss this with Trust your doctor. This is so that the right checks It is not a substitute for a manufacturer’s information leaflet (rev. Nov.03) can be made on you and your child. Clozapine with Confidence This is why regular blood testing is an Side Effects – Does clozapine have important part of being on clozapine. any ? Introduction Without a healthy number of white cells Clozapine is an antipsychotic medication taken you cannot fight off routine infections. All drugs have side effects. Clozapine to treat the symptoms of schizophrenia. It is Without the right number of platelets, your has side effects too. Please see below. only used when other antipsychotic medicines blood will not clot very well if you cut have not helped. It is also known by its brand yourself and you can bruise very easily. Drowsiness, Dizziness on standing name Clozaril. Gets less with time. Helped by taking The makers of clozapine have a very safe larger part of dose at night. Take your Clozapine is different to other antipsychotic system in place. It is called the Clozaril time when getting up from sitting or lying medications. For example, it is stronger in Patient Monitoring System (CPMS). down. working against psychotic symptoms. In this way it can be better at reducing unpleasant At the time of taking the first blood sample Excess saliva experiences and worrying thoughts. Clozapine you will be registered with the CPMS. Often worse at night - wrap a towel also works better against negative symptoms. Your consultant and the supplying around your pillow. Ask your doctor or In this way, it can give you more energy and pharmacy are also registered. Pharmacy pharmacist about tablets that may help help you to stay focused on activities. may only release the next supply of tablets with this. when they get the green light on your For many people there are other gains. They blood test. Constipation may be able to stay out of hospital for longer Increasing the amount of fibre in the diet and possibly do some type of work. Some What is the blood testing schedule ? can help. Ask your pharmacist about a people do very well on clozapine. For This is part of the safe use of the drug and choice of laxative. example, they may be able to live on their own cannot be changed. It is weekly for 18 Do not ignore this side effect. for the first time weeks, fortnightly from 18 weeks until 52 weeks and 4 weekly after the first year. Palpitations Like other antipsychotic medicines, clozapine Arrangements will be made to take your Some people may get a fast heart beat. does not work straight away. Some people blood sample at the most suitable clinic. This is not dangerous but do tell your notice benefit by 6 weeks. For many, The blood sample is sent away to a CPMS doctor. He / she may advise some improvement is slower. It may take up to 6 laboratory for analysis. It is not tested to medication to slow the heart down. months before clear change is seen. For the see how much clozapine you have been small number who do not get better the drug taking. Many of the side effects are short term can easily be stopped. Stopping clozapine and are lessened by introducing the drug under these conditions is done in a slow and Taking the Tablets gradually. Unlike older antipsychotics careful way. Clozapine comes in tablet form only. It is such as haloperidol and chlorpromazine, also known as Clozaril which is the brand clozapine does not cause movement Starting Clozapine name. Please follow the dosing related side effects (eg Parkinsonism). Before you can start clozapine you need to instructions with care. Doses are built up have a blood test. This is to check that the gradually to reduce side effects. If you It should not affect your sex life either. white cells and clotting cells (platelets) are miss more than 2 days worth of tablets healthy. In a small number of cases (1-2%) please ask your doctor for advice. He / Please tell your doctor about any side clozapine can reduce the amount of these she may ask you to re-start the tablets effects that you may be worried about. important blood cells. gradually.