Generic Name: ziprasidone (zi PRAY si done)Brand Names: Geodon
Ziprasidone is an antipsychotic medication. It works by changing the effects of chemicals in the brain.
Ziprasidone is used to treat schizophrenia and the manic symptoms of bipolar disorder (manic depression) in adults and children who are at least 10 years old.
Ziprasidone may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Stop taking ziprasidone and call your doctor right away if you feel dizzy or light-headed, have a fast or pounding heartbeat, or if you faint. This could be signs of a serious heart rhythm problem.There are many other medicines that can cause serious or life-threatening medical problems if you take them together with ziprasidone. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor. Keep a list with you of all the medicines you use and show this list to any doctor or other healthcare provider who treats you.
a personal or family history of "Long QT syndrome";
history of recent heart attack; or
uncontrolled or untreated heart failure.
Ziprasidone should never be taken together with any of the following drugs, or a life-threatening heart rhythm disorder could occur:
arsenic trioxide (Trisenox);
levomethadyl acetate (no longer available in the U.S.);
antibiotics such as gatifloxacin (Tequin), pentamidine (NebuPent, Pentam), moxifloxacin (Avelox), sparfloxacin (Zagam), telithromycin (Ketek);
heart rhythm medicine such as dofetilide (Tikosyn), disopyramide (Norpace), quinidine (Cardioquin, Quinaglute), or sotalol (Betapace); or
medicines to treat psychiatric disorders, such as chlorpromazine (Thorazine), mesoridazine (Serentil), pimozide (Orap), or thioridazine (Mellaril).
If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take ziprasidone:
a heart rhythm disorder;
a history of heart attack or stroke;
a history of bone marrow or blood cell disorder;
low blood levels of potassium or magnesium;
diabetes (ziprasidone may raise your blood sugar);
seizures or epilepsy;
a history of suicidal thoughts;
Parkinson's disease, Alzheimer's;
Ziprasidone may cause you to have high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). Talk to your doctor if you have any signs of hyperglycemia such as increased thirst or urination, excessive hunger, or weakness. If you are diabetic, check your blood sugar levels on a regular basis while you are taking ziprasidone.
The ziprasidone orally disintegrating tablet may contain phenylalanine. Talk to your doctor before using this form of ziprasidone if you have phenylketonuria (PKU).FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether ziprasidone is harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. It is not known whether ziprasidone passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby. Older adults may be more likely to have side effects from this medicine.
Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
This medication comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
To be sure this medication is not causing harmful effects, your blood will need to be tested on a regular basis. Your kidney or liver function may also need to be tested. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.Take this medicine with food.
It is important to take ziprasidone regularly to get the most benefit. Get your prescription refilled before you run out of medicine completely.It may take several weeks of using this medicine before your symptoms improve. For best results, keep using the medication as directed. Talk with your doctor if your symptoms do not improve. Store ziprasidone at room temperature away from moisture, light, and heat.
See also: Ziprasidone dosage in more detail
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at the next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
dizziness, feeling light-headed, fainting, fast or pounding heartbeat;
fever, stiff muscles, confusion, sweating, fast or uneven heartbeats;
fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms;
white patches or sores inside your mouth or on your lips;
tremor (uncontrolled shaking), restless muscle movements in your eyes, tongue, jaw, or neck;
agitation, hostility, confusion;
increased thirst or urination, weakness, extreme hunger; or
penis erection that is painful or lasts 4 hours or longer.
Less serious side effects may include:
mild skin rash;
anxiety, headache, depressed mood;
muscle pain or twitching;
nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite;
runny or stuffy nose, cough, sore throat; or
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Usual Adult Dose for Schizophrenia:
Injection:10 mg IM every 2 hours or 20 mg every 4 hours as neededMaximum dose: 40 mg per dayThere are no data on the IM administration of ziprasidone for greater than 3 consecutive days.Oral:Initial dose: 20 mg twice a day with food. If clinically necessary, initial dosage may be adjusted at intervals of not less than 2 days up to 80 mg twice a day.Maximum dose: 100 mg twice a dayOne study has reported that oral ziprasidone should be taken with food and that a meal equal to or greater than 500 kcal, irrespective of fat content, is required for optimal and reproducible bioavailability of the administered dose.
Usual Adult Dose for Bipolar Disorder:
Oral:Acute Treatment of Manic or Mixed Episodes:Initial dose: 40 mg twice a day with food. The dose should then be increased to 60 mg or 80 mg twice a day on the second day of treatment. The dose should then be adjusted on the basis of toleration and efficacy within the 40 mg to 80 mg twice a day range.Maintenance Treatment (as an adjunct to lithium or valproate):Continue treatment at the same dose on which the patient was initially stabilized, within the range of 40 mg to 80 mg twice daily with food. Patients should be periodically reassessed to determine the need for maintenance treatment.One study has reported that oral ziprasidone should be taken with food and that a meal equal to or greater than 500 kcal, irrespective of fat content, is required for optimal and reproducible bioavailability of the administered dose.
Tell your doctor about all other medications you are using, especially:
a diuretic (water pill), blood pressure medicine, or heart rhythm medicine;
carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Tegretol);
narcotic pain medication;
medicines used to treat Parkinson's Disease such as levodopa (Dopar, Larodopa, Sinemet, Atamet, others); or
antibiotics such as azithromycin (Zithromax), clarithromycin (Biaxin), erythromycin (E-Mycin, E.E.S., Erythrocin, Ery-Tab), ketoconazole (Nizoral), or telithromycin (Ketek).
This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with ziprasidone. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.