Quetiapine is an atypical antipsychotic drug that is used for treating certain mental conditions like schizophrenia and mania or depression that is related to bipolar disorder. The drug restores the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain. It improves your mood, appetite, concentration, sleep as well as your energy levels. Hallucinations and sudden mood swings can also be decreased with the help of this medication. There are two versions of Quetiapine, one is the immediate-release version, where it gets released in the blood stream immediately and the other is the extended-release version, where it releases gradually into the blood.
Belonging to the drug group atypical antipsychotics, Quetiapine is used for treating symptoms related to bipolar disorder, schizophrenia or depression. This medication works by restoring the neurotransmitters’ balance in the brain. It helps to decrease hallucinations in patients who are suffering from these psychotic disorders, and also improves concentration. The medicine is also effective in preventing drastic mood swings.
Quetiapine is available in tablet form and has to be taken orally. It comes in two versions, one that releases into your blood stream immediately (immediate release) and the other that gets released gradually over time in the blood stream (extended release).
Before you are prescribed Quetiapine, your doctor should be informed about your past health conditions. If you have had problems related to eye cataracts, thyroid problems, low count of white blood cells, sleep apnea, enlarged prostate, diabetes, cholesterol and high blood pressure, ensure that your doctor is informed about it. The dosage depends on your age, your present medical condition and it's severity, and how your body reacts after the first dose.
The possible side effects of Quetiapine are drowsiness, constipation, tiredness, blurred vision, increase in weight and dry mouth. In the initial days after you start taking the medicine, you may also feel light-headed or dizzy. These symptoms are generally mild in nature and disappear in a few days, but you can seek medical advice if it is bothersome.
Quetiapine may have some serious side effects too, for which you must stop taking the medication at once and consult your doctor immediately. They are:
- Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome, the symptoms of which are excessive sweating, high fever, severe confusion, dark urine, stiffness of the muscles and change in blood pressure, heart beat or breathing
- Tardive dyskinesia; where you can develop uncontrolled or unusual movements, especially of your lips, mouth, face, tongue, arms and legs
- Tremors or seizures
- Mood changes, feeling depressed, anxious or having suicidal tendencies
- Trouble urinating
- Yellowing of the eyes or the skin
- Milky discharge from breast in women, breast enlargement in both women and men
- Low white blood cell count
- An allergic reaction
As Quetiapine can cause dizziness and drowsiness, it is advised to avoid alcohol while you are taking this medicine, as it can worsen your condition. Ensure that you rise slowly if you are sitting or lying down to prevent falling down. Also, stay away from activities that may require your full concentration in the first few days of taking the medication.
Information given here is based on the salt and content of the medicine. Effect and uses of medicine may vary from person to person. It is advicable to consult a Psychiatrist before using this medicine.
Aggression or angerMajor Common
Loss of balance controlMajor Common
Changes in visionMajor Common
Changes in pattern of speechMajor Less Common
Loss of appetiteMajor Rare
Weight gainMinor Common
Body painMinor Less Common
Decrease in libidoMinor Less Common
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