Risperdal Consta

Generic Name: Risperidone

  • What is this medication and its most common uses?

    Risperdal Consta is a medicine used to treat schizophrenia (a brain disorder that distorts the way a person thinks, acts, expresses emotions, perceives reality, and relates to others). Risperdal Consta is also used alone or in combination with lithium or valproate to treat long term bipolar I disorder (a brain disorder with periods of abnormally and persistently elevated or irritable mood or a state of depressed mood and loss of interest or pleasure in nearly all activities). It is available as an intramuscular injection (injected directly into the muscle).

  • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

    How does this medication work?

    Although it is unclear exactly how Risperdal Consta works, it seems to help balance the chemicals in the brain, thereby helping to improve your symptoms.

    What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

    What:

    Schizophrenia: Risperdal Consta has been shown to relieve symptoms associated with this condition, as measured by appropriate symptom rating scales that are commonly used by healthcare providers to evaluate the effectiveness of the medicine in people with this condition.

    Bipolar I Disorder: Risperdal Consta has been shown to delay the time to relapse.

    When: Everyone responds differently to treatment, so try to be patient and follow your healthcare provider's directions.

    How do I know it is working?

    Your healthcare provider may ask you questions from time to time to assess how well your symptoms are controlled.

  • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

    The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

    Risperdal Consta is not approved to treat mental problems caused by dementia (an illness involving loss of memory and judgment, and confusion) in the elderly. It can be life-threatening when used in elderly people with mental problems caused by dementia.

    Schizophrenia

    More common side effects may include: constipation, dizziness, dry mouth, headache, indigestion, involuntary muscle movements, pain in your arms and legs, sleepiness, tiredness, weight gain.

    Bipolar Disorder

    More common side effects may include: involuntary muscle movements, shaking, weight gain.

    Less common side effects of Risperdal Consta may include:

    Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS) (a life-threatening brain disorder) with symptoms such as high fever, excessive sweating, muscle rigidity, confusion, changes in your breathing, fast or irregular heartbeat, or changes in your blood pressure.

    Tardive dyskinesia, defined as abnormal muscle movements, including tremor, shuffling, and uncontrolled, involuntary movements.

    High blood sugar with symptoms such as excessive thirst, an increase in urination, increased appetite, weakness, confusion, fruity smelling breath, or feeling sick to your stomach.

    Increased cholesterol (fats in your blood) and triglycerides (a type of blood fat), and weight gain.

    Increased prolactin (a hormone that can affect lactation, menstruation, and fertility) levels, with side effects including missed menstrual periods, leakage of milk from the breasts, development of breasts in men, or problems with erection.

    Sudden fall in blood pressure with symptoms such as dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting when rising too quickly from a sitting or lying position.

    Low white blood cell counts with symptoms of an infection (such as fever, sore throat, rash, or chills).

  • Who should not take this medication?

    Your healthcare provider will not give you Risperdal Consta if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.

  • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

    Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Risperdal Consta. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have diabetes; high cholesterol levels; high or low blood pressure; low white blood cell counts; history of seizures; high prolactin levels; heart, liver, or kidney problems; trouble swallowing, Alzheimer's disease; Parkinson's disease; thoughts about suicide; or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

    Adults: The recommended dose is one intramuscular injection every 2 weeks.

    If you have kidney or liver impairment, your healthcare provider will adjust your dose appropriately.

  • How should I take this medication?

    Your healthcare provider will administer Risperdal Consta to you.

    It is important to keep all your appointments and get your injections on time.

  • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

    Do not drink alcohol while you are receiving Risperdal Consta.

    Do not drive, operate machinery, or engage in other dangerous activities until you know how Risperdal Consta affects you.

    Do not get overheated or dehydrated while you are receiving Risperdal Consta. Drink plenty of water and do not over-exercise. Stay out of the sun, and do not wear too much or heavy clothing. In hot weather, stay in a cool place if possible.

    Do not miss any scheduled follow-up appointments with your healthcare provider.

  • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

    If Risperdal Consta is given with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your healthcare provider before combining Risperdal Consta with the following: alcohol, carbamazepine, cimetidine, clozapine, fluoxetine, medications that slow down your brain function, paroxetine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, ranitidine, rifampin, or valproate.

  • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    Risperdal Consta may harm your newborn baby if you receive it during the last few months of your pregnancy. Risperdal Consta can be found in your breast milk if you receive it while breastfeeding. Do not breastfeed while you are receiving Risperdal Consta. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

    Risperdal Consta should be given under special circumstances determined by your healthcare provider. If you miss your scheduled dose, contact your healthcare provider or pharmacist for advice.

  • How should I store this medication?

    Your healthcare provider will store this medication for you.

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