Ziprasidone is used to treat schizophrenia (an illness that causes changes in perception, thoughts and behaviour). It helps relieve common symptoms of schizophrenia such as distorted thinking and emotional instability.
This medicine is also used on its own or together with other medicines to treat a mood disturbance called bipolar disorder.
Take Ziprasidone 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.
This medicine should be taken together with food or immediately after a meal. Try to take it at the same time each day.
Ziprasidone must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel better. Do not stop taking it unless instructed by the doctor.
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 a heart disease (e.g. heart rhythm disorder, recent heart attack, heart failure) as Ziprasidone may not be suitable for you.
Do not take Ziprasidone with similar medicines used to treat abnormal heart rhythm. Please see the section “Can I take this with other medicines?” below for more information.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- liver disease
- kidney disease
- dementia (a disorder affecting memory and thinking)
- Parkinson’s disease (disorder that affects the movement of a person, causing symptoms such as tremors, muscle stiffness, slowed movement and impaired balance or walking)
- epilepsy (fits or seizures)
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.
Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly. Various sets of routine tests may be done while you are being treated with Ziprasidone.
Ziprasidone may cause dizziness, drowsiness or some problems with your eyesight. This medicine may cause you to suddenly fall asleep during your daily activities such as eating and watching television. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert or need to see clearly.
You may also feel dizzy when getting up from a sitting or lying down position, especially if you are taking this medicine for the very first time. This is common and should improve gradually as you get used to Ziprasidone. It will help if you get up slowly from a sitting or lying down position. If you are taking this medicine for the very first time, take the first dose of Ziprasidone at bedtime to minimise dizziness.
Ziprasidone may affect how your body adjusts to temperature changes. Avoid exposure to very cold or very hot environment while being treated with this medicine.
Other side effects include any of the following: headache, nausea, constipation, indigestion, rash, restlessness and weakness.
Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
- signs of allergy such as breathlessness, rashes, swollen mouth or eyes
- high fever
- muscle stiffness
- convulsion or seizures
- thoughts of self-harm
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Do not take Ziprasidone if you are taking any of these medicines:
- medicines for abnormal heart rhythm e.g. sotalol, quinidine, dofetilide
- medicines for nausea or vomiting e.g. dolasetron, droperidol
- medicines used to treat behaviour problems e.g. chlorpromazine, thioridazine, mesoridazine, pimozide
- medicines used to treat malaria e.g. halofantrine, mefloquine
- certain antibiotics e.g. gatifloxacin, moxifloxacin, sparfloxacin, pentamidine
- medicines used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders e.g. tacrolimus
- cholesterol-lowering medicine e.g. probucol
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- medicines to treat Parkinson’s disease e.g. levodopa
- medicines to treat fungal infections e.g. ketoconazole
- medicines used to treat epilepsy (fits or seizures) e.g. carbamazepine
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Ziprasidone.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, 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.