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What should I know before taking phenothiazines?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner

Older people who take antipsychotic drugs have a higher risk of death, especially from heart problems or infection.

If you have epilepsy, an enlarged prostate, cardiovascular disease, glaucoma, a phenothiazine may not be a good option for you.

If you have congenital QT prolongation syndrome, you should not take thioridazine.

If you have had arrhythmia, you should not take thioridazine.

If you have had a severe reaction to insulin, a phenothiazine may not be a good option for you.

If you have had brain damage, you should not take a phenothiazine.

If you have had a severe reaction to electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), a phenothiazine may not be a good option for you.

If you have impaired kidney function or impaired liver function, a phenothiazine may not be a good option for you.

If you have bone marrow failure, you should not take a phenothiazine. 

If you are pregnant, may be pregnant, or plan to become pregnant, phenothiazine may not be a good option for you. It is not known if it is safe for pregnant women.

You should not take a phenothiazine if you are breastfeeding.

This answer was adapted from Sharecare's award-winning AskMD app. Start a consultation now to find out what's causing your symptoms, learn how to manage a condition, or find a doctor.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.