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quetiapine

Drug Class: Commonly Known As: Category:
Antipsychotics seroquel Adult

quetiapine - What is it for

​Quetiapine belongs to a class of medicines known as the second generation antipsychotics.

It is used to treat conditions such as

  • Psychosis (including but not limited to symptoms of altered thought, hallucinations and altered emotions)
  • Bipolar disorder (alternating mood)

It may be given to you for other reasons. Do check with your doctor what you are taking this for.

quetiapine - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can quetiapine cause?

Potential side effects

All medicines may cause side effects. However, many people do not experience them.

Most of the side effects listed here will improve with time. Speak with your doctor or pharmacist if they persist, become bothersome or worsen.

 

Side effectsWhat to do about it
Increased appetite and weight gainMaintain a healthy diet. Exercise regularly.
Constipation

Increase your intake of fluids and include more fibre (vegetables and fruits) in your diet. Incorporate some exercise in your daily routine.

Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you require any laxatives.

Dry mouthSip water regularly. Sucking on sugar-free sweets or ice chips may help alleviate symptoms. Avoid caffeine as it may worsen dry mouth.
DizzinessGet up slowly from a lying or sitting position
Drowsiness

Do not drive or operate any machinery.

Discuss with your doctor if you can take your medicine at a different time of day. 

HeadacheConsult your doctor or pharmacist if you need any painkillers

Serious side effects

If you experience signs of allergy such as rashes, swelling of lips/face/throat and difficulty breathing, stop this medicine immediately and seek medical attention.

If you experience new or worsening thoughts of self-harm or altered behavior consult a doctor immediately.

You may feel the need to keep moving constantly. Please notify your doctor if this happens after you have been given this medicine.

On rare occasions this medicine may cause unusual movements involving the face or tongue, muscle stiffness, shakiness and unsteadiness on your feet. Please notify your doctor immediately if this happens while taking this medicine.

A condition known as Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome may occur rarely. Symptoms include but are not limited to fever, muscle rigidity, altered mental state/ consciousness and/or irregular blood pressure, heart rhythm and palpitations. If you develop any of these symptoms or other unexplained symptoms while taking this medicine consult your doctor immediately. Inform your doctor if you require further information regarding this condition.

 

Take note that the side effects listed here are not exhaustive. Do seek medical attention if you have other symptoms that you think may be related to this medicine.

 

Before taking quetiapine, what precautions must I follow?

​What do I need to tell my doctor before I take this medicine?

  • Drug allergies
  • Pre-existing medical conditions such as prior stroke, heart disease, diabetes, Parkinson's disease, seizures, blocked intestines, liver or kidney diseases, blood disorders, and prostate problems
  • Whether you are taking any other medicines, supplements or traditional medicines. Some of them may affect how this medicine works.

For women: Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breast-feeding or have plans to become pregnant. If you are pregnant and/or breastfeeding, your doctor would have discussed the potential benefits and side-effects of continuing this medication with you but should you have further questions or concerns, do consult your doctor.

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take quetiapine?

​This medicine may interact with a number of other medicines. Inform your doctor if you are taking or intend to start taking other medicines or supplements

quetiapine - Dosage and How to Use

How should quetiapine be used?

​Take this medicine exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow the instructions on the medicine label or as advised by the pharmacist.

Quetiapine can be taken with or without food.

This medicine may not take effect immediately. It may take up to a few weeks before this medicine can exert its full effects. Continue taking it regularly to benefit from it.

Do not stop taking this medicine even after you feel better. Your symptoms may return if this medicine is stopped too early. Check with your doctor on the duration of treatment that is suitable for you.

Do not stop taking this medicine abruptly or change the dose without consulting your doctor. You may experience unpleasant side effects if the medicine is stopped suddenly.

Avoid taking alcohol while you are on this medicine.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

​Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the next one at your usual timing.

Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

 

What should I do if I overdose?

​If you take more than the dose prescribed to you by your doctor, consult your doctor or health care professional immediately. 

quetiapine - Handling and Storage

How should I handle quetiapine safely?

How should I store quetiapine?

Keep away from children;#Keep in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight;#

How should I dispose of quetiapine safely?

​Throw away any unused or expired medicines. Consult your medical professional if you are unsure with respect to how to safely dispose of any excess medicines/expired medicines.

quetiapine - Additional Information

​What are the things I need to know or look out for while on this medicine?

  • Avoid driving or any other activities that requires concentration until you see how this drug affects you
  • Be careful in hot weather or while being active. Drink lots of fluids to stop fluid loss.
  • Inform your other healthcare professionals that you are on this medicine as well.
  • Discuss with your doctor or pharmacist before you take any other medicines or natural products.
  • Do not share your medicines with others.
  • Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions about your medicine.

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