chlorpromazine - oral, Thorazine (cont.)
PRECAUTIONS: See also Warning section.Before taking chlorpromazine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other phenothiazine drugs (such as perphenazine, thioridazine); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.This medication should not be used in people who are intoxicated with alcohol/narcotics/other drugs that cause drowsiness/slowed breathing.Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: liver problems, kidney problems, heart problems (such as mitral valve insufficiency, abnormal heart rhythm), low blood pressure, blockage of the intestines, glaucoma, seizures, enlarged prostate, breathing problems (such as severe asthma, emphysema, lung infections), blood disorders (such as bone marrow depression, low red/white/platelet blood cell counts), low levels of calcium in the blood, loss of too much body water (dehydration), breast cancer, brain disorder/tumor/injury, exposure to organophosphate insecticides, pheochromocytoma, drug/alcohol/substance abuse, Parkinson's disease.Chlorpromazine may cause a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation). QT prolongation can infrequently result in serious (rarely fatal) fast/irregular heartbeat and other symptoms (such as severe dizziness, fainting) that need medical attention right away.The risk of QT prolongation may be increased if you have certain medical conditions or are taking other drugs that may cause QT prolongation. Before using chlorpromazine, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you take and if you have any of the following conditions: certain heart problems (heart failure, slow heartbeat, QT prolongation in the EKG), family history of certain heart problems (QT prolongation in the EKG, sudden cardiac death).Low levels of potassium or magnesium in the blood may also increase your risk of QT prolongation. This risk may increase if you use certain drugs (such as diuretics/"water pills") or if you have conditions such as severe sweating, diarrhea, or vomiting. Talk to your doctor about using chlorpromazine safely.This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy or cause blurred vision. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness or clear vision until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Avoid alcoholic beverages.Before having surgery or imaging procedures (such as certain X-rays, CT scans) requiring the use of contrast dye (such as metrizamide), tell your doctor or dentist that you are using this medication and about all the products you use (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products).This medication may make you more sensitive to the sun. Avoid prolonged sun exposure, tanning booths, and sunlamps. Use a sunscreen and wear protective clothing when outdoors.This medication may decrease your ability to sweat, making you more likely to get heat stroke. Avoid activities that may cause you to overheat (such as doing strenuous work/exercise in hot weather, using hot tubs). When the weather is hot, drink plenty of fluids and dress lightly. If you become overheated, promptly seek cooler shelter and stop exercising. Seek immediate medical attention if you develop a fever, mental/mood changes, headache, or dizziness.Children with acute illnesses (such as a viral infection, dehydration) are at increased risk for serious muscle problems during chlorpromazine treatment. Consult the doctor for more details.Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially dizziness, drowsiness, uncontrollable movements, and anticholinergic effects (such as constipation, difficulty urinating, and blurred vision), and QT prolongation (see above).During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication unless directed by your doctor. Avoid use of chlorpromazine near the due date because it may cause low blood pressure in the mother. Babies born to mothers who have used this medication during pregnancy may rarely have liver problems with symptoms including yellowing of the eyes/skin or dark urine. If you notice liver problems in your infant, tell the doctor right away. When this drug is used during the last 3 months of pregnancy, babies born to these mothers may infrequently develop symptoms including muscle stiffness or shakiness, drowsiness, feeding/breathing difficulties, or constant crying. If you notice any of these symptoms in your newborn anytime during their first month, tell the doctor right away.This medication passes into breast milk and may have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
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