Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Clozapine side effects? How long do they last?

Hubs came home after a week in the hospital (Dr called me and asked me to try talk him into an extra week cuz he couldn’t. I couldn’t either so he had to let him go at 1 week). They put him on Clozapine which I was excited about, as I’ve heard great things about. He’s not as excited as I. He’s done nothing but complain since he’s been home. And we couldn’t find a pharmacy that even HAD it in stock (literally, I called 11 pharmacys {we tired of driving around to them. Drove to 4 of them} before I found 1 and they required the dr to fax recent labs. His psych appt isn’t until tomorrow (video appt) so he’s been without it for 2 days. He’s decided that he feels better so it’s the med that made him feel awful and he decided he doesn’t want it. He agreed to something else - thank God, cuz he’s so anti-med. We have to wait until his appt tomorrow morning. He doesn’t want to hear that all meds have side effects and that he didn’t give it a fair chance (only 1 week).

We’ll see how he does on another med. I’ve heard such great things about Clozapine that I was hopeful. Also scared, since it’s a weekly blood draw which I wasn’t sure he’d abide by. Hopefully he’ll get something easier to get! He can get 3 months worth easily thru his mail order meds for free but he needs a couple weeks worth to get him by until those come so hoping those r easier to obtain.

The week of hospitalization didn’t do a whole lot. He’s still paranoid, anxious, and hearing and talking to his voices. He got super angry today while driving in the car and pulled over and said he was walking. I waited about 5 minutes and he asked me to drive. I knew he wouldn’t walk. I’m tiring of it all. But I can’t leave a sick person. And he IS sick. Not just being an asshold - he’s actually sick. Hoping the new psych and therapist will help

Thats out update…

Marci

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For my son most of the most noticeable side effects were, excess sleeping and increased appetite causing weight gain. I don’t recall anything worse than that. Oh and excess salivation at night but my son takes a small amount of benztropine at night and that helps with it.

It took around 6 months for the sleeping and eating issues to normalize and they continued to normalize throughout the year. This drug is extremely effective but it takes TIME and PATIENCE and a regular, dependable schedule, if the patient is a smoker or a coffee drinker the cigarettes and coffee have to stay relatively the same amount each day or if changes are made with them it has to be gradual because it will affect the effectiveness of the drug.

Also the patient has to refrain from any recreational drugs or alcohol. In the beginning I let my son sleep as much as he needed to on advice of his doctor, at first it was nearly the whole day or sometimes 16 hours or more. His doctor said the brain takes time to heal. Today my son sleeps and wakes normally.

After 6 months most of the voices and delusions were gone, but they were completely gone after 1 year and have not returned. Initially my son gained almost 100 pounds , but after a couple of years of wellness he started working out and lost almost 65 of that. Stress of any kind can cause setbacks that have to be recovered from. Stress management within the living environment is essential. Clozapine is so worth the patience and effort it takes to get to the end results. I would have never gotten my son back without it. I hope my reply helps. Good luck.