haloperidol (Haldol)

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

What is Haldol (haloperidol)?

Haldol (haloperidol) is an antipsychotic medication. It also is used to control tics and vocal utterances that are part of Tourette's syndrome.

Is Haldol (haloperidol) available as a generic drug?

Yes

Do I need a prescription for Haldol (haloperidol)?

Yes

Why is Haldol (haloperidol) prescribed to patients?

Haldol is used for treating schizophrenia, acute psychosis, and for tics and vocal utterances of Tourette's syndrome.

What are the side effects of Haldol (haloperidol)?

The most common side effects associated with Haldol are:

  • extrapyramidal effects (sudden, often jerky, involuntary motions of the head, neck, arms, body, or eyes, muscle stiffness, akathisia, Parkinsonism),
  • dizziness,
  • hyperactivity,
  • tiredness, and
  • nausea.

Other important side effects are:

Haldol may cause a condition called "orthostatic hypotension" during the early phase of treatment (first week or two). Orthostatic hypotension causes patients to become dizzy upon arising from a lying or sitting position because of a drop in blood pressure.

Haldol also may cause abnormal heart beats, sudden death, seizures, decreases in red and white blood cells, and withdrawal symptoms.

Elderly patients with dementia-related psychosis and treated with antipsychotic drugs such as Haldol are at an increased risk of death.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/4/2016

Quick GuideSchizophrenia: Symptoms, Types, Causes, Treatment

Schizophrenia: Symptoms, Types, Causes, Treatment
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