Perphenazine is used to treat schizophrenia, an illness that causes changes in perception, thoughts and behaviour. It helps to relieve symptoms common in schizophrenia, such as distorted thinking and emotional instability.
This medicine may also be used to treat severe nausea and vomiting.
Perphenazine may be used to treat other conditions as decided by your doctor.
Take Perphenazine exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
You may take this medicine with or without food. Take it with meal if stomach upset occurs. Try to take Perphenazine at the same time each day.
The dose of this medicine will be decided by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the treatment timeframe depending on the type and severity of your condition.
If you are taking Perphenazine for schizophrenia, it must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel well. Do not stop taking it suddenly as this may worsen your condition.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Alert your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- liver disease
- bone marrow disease
- brain damage or disorders
- blood disorders e.g. low blood cell count
- phaeochromocytoma (a tumour of the adrenal gland)
as Perphenazine may not be suitable for you.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- enlarged prostate
- heart disease
- kidney disease
- asthma and other lung diseases
- thyroid problems
- Parkinson's disease (a brain disease that affects movement)
- dementia (group of symptoms affecting thinking and social abilities)
- epilepsy (fits or seizures)
- glaucoma (increased pressure in the eye)
- myasthenia gravis (muscle weakness disorder)
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Notify your doctor if you consume large amounts of alcohol or if you are a frequent drinker.
If you are going for an operation, including minor surgery and dental work, inform your doctor or dentist that you are being treated with Perphenazine.
What lifestyle changes should I make?
Perphenazine may affect the ability of your body to adjust to temperature changes in the environment. Avoid exposure to very cold or very hot environments. Avoid strenuous exercise and activities like going to the sauna. Drink more water to prevent dehydration.
This medicine may cause your white blood cell count to drop drastically. This may put you at higher risk for infections. For as long as you are being treated with Perphenazine, you will need to have regular blood tests done. These blood tests are very important for you. These tests help your doctor to check that your white blood cell counts are within the normal range. Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have these blood tests.
Perphenazine may also cause your blood sugar levels to rise. Monitor your blood sugar levels more regularly if you have diabetes or a family history of diabetes. Ask your doctor how often you need to have your blood sugar levels monitored.
Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly. Routine blood tests, mental status monitoring and eye examination may be needed while you are being treated with Perphenazine.
Perphenazine may cause drowsiness or some problems with your eyesight. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activities in which you need to be alert or need to see clearly.
You may feel dizzy when getting up from a sitting or lying down position, especially if you are taking Perphenazine for the first time. This is normal and should disappear gradually as you get used to the medicine. It will help if you get up slowly from a sitting or lying down position.
Other side effects include any of the following: dry mouth, headache, blocked nose, tiredness, difficulty urinating, constipation, chest pain, problems sleeping, confusion, discolouration of your skin or urine, nightmares, ejaculation problems and weight gain.
Perphenazine may cause the level of your white blood cells to drop. White blood cells help your body to fight infections. A fall in the level of your white blood cells may put you at higher risk for infections, such as coughs, colds and flu, which may lead to more serious infections. Avoid crowded places and people who are sick. Alert your doctor if you have a fever, or a cough or flu that does not go away.
Your skin may also become more sensitive to sunlight. Apply sunscreen when going outdoors and avoid direct or prolonged exposure to sunlight and UV lamps.
Other side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following:
- muscle stiffness, fever, excessive sweating, fast or irregular heartbeat
- muscle spasms or uncontrolled muscle movements of your body or face, such as sticking out of the tongue, smacking of the lips
- yellowing of your eyes or skin
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Inform your doctor and your pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- medicines for mood disorders e.g. amitriptyline, haloperidol, lithium
- medicines for epilepsy e.g. phenobarbital
- medicines used to treat Parkinson's disease e.g. levodopa, bromocriptine
- medicines for heart disease e.g. disopyramide, captopril
- diuretics (water pills) e.g. furosemide
This medicine must not be taken together with antacids as antacids can reduce the effectiveness of Perphenazine.
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Perphenazine.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicine, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.