What Is Paliperidone Palmitate?

Drue Tibbits
Drue Tibbits

Paliperidone palmitate is a psychotropic agent used to treat schizophrenia. It is supplied as an injectable drug available in several dosages in prefilled syringes. This medication has many side effects ranging from mild to severe, and patients should weigh the risks and benefits of using this drug before beginning therapy. It can also cause several serious conditions, one of which can be fatal. Patients should discuss these dangers with their doctors before beginning therapy with this medication.

Common side effects of this drug include drowsiness, dizziness, and blurred vision. Paliperidone palmitate often causes weight gain and dry mouth. Like many injectable medicines, it is not unusual to have pain at the injection site. This medicine can also cause feelings of restlessness, trouble with sleeping, and sexual problems. Although most of the common side effects are not cause for concern, patients should notify their doctors if they become bothersome.

This medication can also cause several, more serious side effects. Patients should notify their doctors if they notice signs of infection, have difficulty swallowing, or experience muscle spasms. Some patients may experience dangerous side effects such as fainting, changes in heartbeat, or extreme dizziness. Patients should contact their doctors immediately if any of these events occur.

In addition to the side effects, paliperidone palmitate can also cause neuroleptic malignant syndrome. This condition is a reaction to the drug and, in rare cases, can be fatal. Symptoms include muscle pain or stiffness, a high fever, and a change urine output volume. The patient may also feel paranoid or have other significant mood changes. Patients experiencing any of these symptoms need immediate medical assistance.

Paliperidone palmitate can also cause tardive dyskinesia, although this is a rare occurrence. This is a medical condition characterized by involuntary movements. It usually resolves itself once the medication is stopped, but it sometimes can be permanent. Symptoms include uncontrolled movements, especially of the face, arms, or legs. Patients should notify their doctors at the first sign of these symptoms.

Diabetics should take extra caution when using this medicine as paliperidone palmitate can cause an increase in blood sugar levels. Patients with diabetes need to check their blood sugar often and adjust for the effects of the paliperidone. This medicine may interact with other medicines, including benztropine, levodopa, and lisinopril. Patients should notify their doctors of all medications they are taking prior to beginning therapy.

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