We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What is Thioridazine?

K.C. Bruning
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGEEK is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGEEK, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Thioridazine is an anti-psychotic drug which is part of a group of medications called phenothiazines. It used to be commonly prescribed for psychotic illnesses such as schizophrenia. Due to concern that large doses of the drug can cause cardiotoxicity, a condition that weakens the heart, or retinopathy, a form of damage to retina of the eye, use of the drug has declined. Now thioridazine is usually only prescribed when other medications have failed to improve a patient’s condition. It has been marketed under the brand names Mellaril® and Mellaril-S®.

The drug contains a mixture of acids and chemicals which can help to address an imbalance of chemicals in the brain. It works to change the way the chemicals in the brain function. As this process can have a dramatic effect on the mind, discontinuation of thioridazine treatment is generally approached with great caution. If the drug is not phased out gradually, a patient can have withdrawal symptoms, which may include insomnia, anxiety, or agitation. In situations where a patient must quickly stop using thioridazine, other drugs may be prescribed to alleviate these symptoms.

Due to the risk of cardiotoxicity and retinopathy, use of thioridazine is for the most part no longer in common use. The manufacturer of Mellaril-S®, which operates in Canada and the United States of America even stopped producing the drug in 2005. Now thioridazine is primarily distributed in generic form.

As there are several known risks to taking thioridazine, patients taking the drug are usually closely observed before, during, and after treatment. The screening process may include several white blood cell counts, therapy, and electrocardiography (ECG) monitoring, which is an examination of electrical activity in the heart. These tests may determine that a patient is not or is no longer eligible for the drug.

There are some conditions which may make taking thioridazine too risky or which require special dosages or observation from the prescribing doctor. Some of these conditions include liver, kidney, or heart disease. A history of breathing problems, such as emphysema or severe asthma, may also be problematic. Other conditions that should be discussed with a doctor include high blood pressure, breast cancer, glaucoma, or Parkinson’s disease.

Minor side effects of taking thioridazine include blurred vision, headache, and dizziness. Patients may also experience drowsiness, insomnia, and anxiety. Sexual problems such as an unusual increase or increase in drive or impotence are also possible. Other potential effects include constipation, itching, and dry mouth.

The more severe side effects of taking thioridazine should receive immediate medical attention. Fainting, fast heartbeat, tremor, and seizures are among the several serious side effects. Patients may also experience fever, confusion, twitching, and joint pain or swelling.

WiseGEEK is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
K.C. Bruning
By K.C. Bruning
Kendahl Cruver Bruning, a versatile writer and editor, creates engaging content for a wide range of publications and platforms, including WiseGEEK. With a degree in English, she crafts compelling blog posts, web copy, resumes, and articles that resonate with readers. Bruning also showcases her passion for writing and learning through her own review site and podcast, offering unique perspectives on various topics.

Discussion Comments

K.C. Bruning

K.C. Bruning

Kendahl Cruver Bruning, a versatile writer and editor, creates engaging content for a wide range of publications and...
Learn more
WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGEEK, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.