What is Clozaril?

Clozaril (generic name: clozapine) is an atypical antipsychotic. It is approved for the treatment of schizophrenia. Clozaril may also be used off-label for the treatment of bipolar disorder, depression, and other psychiatric disorders.

Health Benefits of Clozaril

Clozaril has a number of health benefits. First, it is effective in treating schizophrenia. Second, it can help to reduce the risk of suicide in people with schizophrenia. Third, it can improve the quality of life for people with schizophrenia. Finally, it can help to reduce the burden on caregivers of people with schizophrenia.

Side Effects of Clozaril

The most common side effects of Clozaril include:

Drowsiness

Dizziness

Constipation

Weight gain

Dry mouth

Less common side effects include:

Low blood pressure

Seizures

Fainting

Agitation

Anxiety

rare side effects include:

Tardive dyskinesia

Neuroleptic malignant syndrome

Agranulocytosis

Dosages of Clozaril

The usual starting dose of Clozaril is 25 mg daily. The dose may be increased by 25-50 mg increments every week until the desired response is achieved. The maximum recommended dose is 900 mg/day.

For people with schizophrenia, the usual maintenance dose is 300-600 mg/day.

For people with bipolar disorder, the usual maintenance dose is 400-800 mg/day.

Clozaril should be taken with food. It should be taken at the same time each day to maintain a consistent level of medication in the body.

If you miss a dose of Clozaril, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses of Clozaril at the same time.

Clozaril should be stored at room temperature, away from light and moisture.

Interactions

Clozaril may interact with other medications. To avoid interactions, your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. Be sure to tell your doctor about all the medications you take, including over-the-counter drugs, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Mechanism of Action

Clozaril works by blocking dopamine receptors in the brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that is involved in the regulation of mood and behavior. By blocking dopamine receptors, Clozaril can help to improve symptoms of psychosis.

Pharmacokinetics

Clozaril is absorbed rapidly from the gastrointestinal tract. The bioavailability of Clozaril is about 70%. The peak plasma concentration is reached in 1-4 hours.

Clozaril is metabolized in the liver by cytochrome P450 enzymes. The metabolites of Clozaril are excreted by the kidney.

The half-life of Clozaril is about 12 hours.

Alternatives to Clozaril

There are a number of alternatives to Clozaril. Other atypical antipsychotics include:

Aripiprazole (Abilify)

Olanzapine (Zyprexa)

Risperidone (Risperdal)

Quetiapine (Seroquel)

Ziprasidone (Geodon)

Paliperidone (Invega)

Asenapine (Saphris)

Lurasidone (Latuda)

Some of these medications are available in generic form. Generic drugs are usually cheaper than brand-name drugs.

Clinical Trials

Clinical trials are research studies that investigate the safety and efficacy of new drugs. They are an important step in the drug approval process.

The FDA requires that all drugs be proven safe and effective in clinical trials before they can be approved for use.

Clozaril has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In one trial, Clozaril was found to be more effective than placebo in reducing symptoms of schizophrenia.

In another trial, Clozaril was found to be more effective than haloperidol in treating people with first-episode psychosis.

Symptoms of an Overdose

Symptoms of an overdose of Clozaril may include:

Drowsiness

Dizziness

Agitation

Anxiety

Seizures

Fainting

Low blood pressure

If you think you or someone else may have overdosed on Clozaril.

Chemistry

Clozaril is a tricyclic dibenzodiazepine. It is structurally similar to clozapine.

The chemical structure of Clozaril is:

IUPAC name: 8-chloro-11-(4-methylpiperazin-1-yl)-5H-dibenzo(b,e)(1,4)diazepine

Molecular formula: C18H19ClN4

Molecular weight: 324.8 g/mol