Seroquel is used to treat patients who have depression (major depressive disorder), schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder. It’s used in adults as well as in children who are 13 and above who have schizophrenia. It’s also used in its extended-release form for children who are age 10 and over who have bipolar disorder and need treatment for manic episodes. It can be used by itself, or it can be paired with another drug such as lithium or divalproex to treat mania.

Seroquel is a type of psychotropic medication that is in a class of medicines called atypical antipsychotics. It treats patients by changing the activity of specific substances that are naturally found in the brain.

Precautions and Warnings for Seroquel

Seroquel can cause you to be drowsy or dizzy, and it can cause blurry vision. Don’t drive until you know how this medication will affect your ability to do it safely. Taking cannabis or alcohol can make the drowsiness and dizziness worse. Avoid alcohol and discuss any cannabis use with your doctor.

This drug can sometimes cause a heart rhythm condition called QT prolongation. This can cause serious heartbeat problems or other problems. It can cause an irregular or fast heartbeat, fainting, and dizziness. If you experience these, you need medical help as soon as possible. If you take other medications that can also cause QT prolongation, your risk of developing it is higher. Make sure your doctor knows about your heart health history as well as your family history of problems such as cardiac death, heart failure, etc. You also have a higher risk of it if you have low magnesium or potassium levels in your blood. Your risk also goes up if you take diuretics or you have a lot of vomiting, diarrhea, or sweating.

You may be more susceptible to heat stroke while taking Seroquel because it can cause you to sweat less. Avoid overheating by avoiding hot tubs and exercise or strenuous work done in hot weather. When in hot weather, take frequent breaks, dress lightly, and drink often. If you have dizziness, mental changes, or a fever that doesn’t get better, get medical help for possible heat stroke.

If you plan to have surgery of any kind, make sure the doctor knows you take Seroquel. They will need to know about everything you take. When children take this medication, they are often at a higher risk of side effects like increased prolactin and higher blood pressure. Older adults also tend to be more at risk of side effects. These can include QT prolongation, lightheadedness, drowsiness, and dizziness which can contribute to a higher risk of falling.

This medication should be used in pregnancy only when it’s clearly needed. When the drug is taken during the last trimester of pregnancy, babies rarely run the risk of having trouble with breathing or feeding, shakiness, stiff muscles, and other effects. If you see these symptoms, notify the doctor as soon as possible. It’s important to talk to your doctor about the risks and the benefits of using this medication during pregnancy. It can be serious to go untreated for problems like depression and schizophrenia, and some pregnant women will need to stay on this medication. It’s known that Seroquel goes into breast milk, and it can have adverse effects on a baby. Talk to your doctor before you breastfeed on this medication.

When elderly patients take Seroquel or other antipsychotic medications, they have a higher risk of death. It is not to be used in patients who have psychosis related to dementia. This medication can also increase the risk of people under 25 having suicidal thoughts or behaviors or having worsening moods. It must be clearly needed in patients who are under this age. It’s not approved at all for patients under age 10.

In some patients, it can cause worsening depression or other mood changes. These may include panic attacks, anxiety, insomnia, anger, etc. Tell your doctor if you find that your mood is worse or that you’re having a lot of mood changes. Watch for these issues when you begin the medication as well as anytime the dosage is changed.

Don’t take this medication if you’re allergic to it or may be allergic to its inactive ingredients. Tell your doctor about your full medical history before you take Seroquel. It’s especially important to tell your doctor if have or have a history of any of these problems:

  • Intestinal or stomach blockage
  • Low white blood cell count
  • Cataracts
  • Intestines or stomach that aren’t moving
  • Liver disease
  • Seizure disorder
  • Diabetes or a family history of diabetes
  • Problems swallowing
  • High blood pressure
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Thyroid problems
  • Substance use disorder or a family history of it
  • High triglycerides or cholesterol levels
  • Heart disease
  • Sleep apnea

Side Effects of Seroquel

There are many common side effects that patients may get when taking Seroquel. Not all patients have side effects, and for some patients, their side effects will go away after a few weeks or less.

Common Side Effects

Some of the most common side effects include:

  • Lack of energy
  • Speech problems
  • Faster heartbeat
  • Tiredness, drowsiness, or dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Feeling that you may pass out
  • Difficulty with movements
  • Sore throat
  • Abnormal liver function tests
  • Weight gain and/or increased appetite
  • Dry mouth or stuffy nose
  • Constipation, vomiting, or upset stomach

Serious Side Effects

There may also be serious side effects that you need to call your doctor about. These can include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Heart rate that is uneven, slow, or fast
  • Seizures
  • Feeling unusually cold or hot
  • Difficult or painful urination
  • Facial muscle movements that you can’t control such as lip smacking, chewing, eye movement, tongue movement, or frowning
  • Severe constipation
  • Trouble swallowing
  • Tenderness or swelling of the breasts or discharge from the nipples
  • Missed menstrual periods
  • Impotence
  • Feeling lightheaded, having a severe headache, or sudden weakness or numbness
  • Symptoms of an infection: chills, bleeding or bruising, sore throat, loss of appetite, fever, body aches, feeling unusually tired
  • Blurry vision, seeing halos surrounding lights, eye pain, or eye redness
  • Symptoms of a serious nervous system reaction: high fever, feeling that you may pass out, uneven or fast heartbeats, very rigid muscles, confusion, tremors, or sweating
  • Signs of high blood sugar: dry mouth, increased urination, or increased thirst
  • Symptoms of underactive thyroid: facial puffiness, tiredness, being more sensitive to the cold, weight gain, thinning hair, dry skin, or depressed mood
  • Signs of low white blood cell counts: Skin sores, fever, cough, mouth sores, or sore throat

Drug Interactions of Seroquel

There are many other drugs that may interact with Seroquel. These can include:

Strengths and Dosages of Seroquel

Seroquel is available as an oral tablet that is available in six strengths. These are 25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg, 300 mg, and 400 mg.

Seroquel tablets:25 mg, 50 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg, 300 mg, 400 mg

Cost of Seroquel in the USA

Seroquel costs can vary with the specific pharmacy and the strength of the tablets. A three-month supply of Seroquel can average between $250 and $400, depending on the strength.

Why Is Seroquel So Expensive?

Seroquel is a brand-name medication, and these cost more than the generics. Seroquel is one of the higher-priced antipsychotic drugs, and there is high demand for it.

Seroquel Alternatives

The alternatives for Seroquel can include Latuda, Rexulti, Risperdal, and Zyprexa.

FAQs of Seroquel

What does Seroquel do?

It changes the activity of certain chemicals in the brain to create a more stable mood

What is Seroquel used for?

It’s used to treat depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder.

How long does it take for Seroquel to put you to sleep?

It generally takes about 30 minutes.

How long does Seroquel stay in your system?

It can remain in the body for about 30 hours.

How long does it take for Seroquel to work?

It generally begins within a couple of weeks, but its full effect generally isn’t felt until two to three months.

What should I expect coming off of Seroquel?

You may experience withdrawal symptoms such as a fast heart rate, vomiting, nausea, and insomnia. Work with your doctor to taper off this medication.

How does Seroquel make you feel?

It can boost your mood and help balance your mood. It can prevent manic episodes and help with the psychosis of schizophrenia.

Does Seroquel cause weight gain?

This is a common side effect of this medication. Up to 23% of patients experience this effect.

What happens when you have taken too much Seroquel?

You can call poison control to find out whether you need emergency medical help, or you can call your doctor and tell them how much you took.

What happens if you miss a dose of Seroquel?

Once you’ve skipped a dose, take the missed dose if it’s only been a few hours since the missed one. If it’s been longer, skip the dose and go back to your normal schedule.

What drug class is Seroquel?

Seroquel is an atypical antipsychotic.

Does Seroquel make you hungry?

Yes, it does have this effect on some patients.

What is the half-life of Seroquel?

The half-life is about six hours.

Can I drink alcohol while taking Seroquel?

It’s not recommended to drink alcohol while taking this medication.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The information provided here is for educational purposes only and is not intended to serve as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment recommendations. It should not be taken as an endorsement of any specific medication or treatment. Individual health conditions and responses to treatment can vary greatly; therefore, this information should not be seen as a guarantee of safety, suitability, or effectiveness for any particular individual. Always consult with a healthcare professional for personalized medical advice and before making any decisions regarding your health or treatment plans.

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