Known by the generic name olanzapine, Zyprexa is prescribed for the treatment of psychotic disorders such as maniac depression, bipolar disorder, and schizophrenia. Patients older than 13 years of age can be given this atypical anti-psychotic drug for relief from the symptoms of thier disorder.

Schizophrenia: an introduction

Considered to be the most devastating and chronic form of mental illness, Schizophrenia affects about 1% population on the planet. The occurrence of delusions, psychotic symptoms and hallucinations are some of the indications of this condition. Also, negative symptoms like diminished emotions, lowered motivation and apathy are commonly observed. People suffering from this mental illness find it difficult to distinguish reality from imagination and are unable to think clearly and also experience difficulty in managing emotions.

Zyprexa: drug Facts

Manufactured by Eli Lilly this drug was approved in the month of September in 1996. This drug is sold in the form of orally disintegrating tablets and injections which healthcare experts prescribe based on the individual circumstances. The exact mode of action is unknown, but this particularly works by altering the levels of some chemicals in the brain.

Some drug facts particular to this class of medicine are as follows:

  • The occurrence of high blood sugar has been a prominent finding among people who take this drug.  Therefore it is advised to monitor the blood sugar level regularly without lapses.
  • Weight gain, increase in cholesterol level, especially among patients below 20 years is very common; regular blood analysis as such is advised to avoid complications.
  • Adults suffering from dementia related disorders are strictly recommended to avoid taking Zyprexa as it can lead to worsening of psychotic conditions and even result in severe pneumonia or unexplained death.
  • People who are administered Zyprexa are particularly advised to be careful while driving as it can impair the thought process and reflexes.
  • In total 794 drug reactions are observed. Out of which, 41 are categorized as major, 740 as moderate and 13 as minor reactions.
  • Alcohol should be completely avoided and intake of fluids in large quantities is advised, especially if the person is involved in heavy physical activity and is living in hot climate.
  • People with history of heart ailments, diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol are advised to be careful in order to avoid severe interactions that may occur afterwards.

Drug reactions seen among different age group:

In teenagers:

Zyprexa is not recommended among children below 13 years and teenagers as they are more prone to develop the side effects, which may appear as increased levels of cholesterol, weight gain.

In adults:

Older adults are more prone to develop symptoms like drowsiness, dizziness and seizures than those who do not take Zyprexa.

In expecting women:

Use of this drug during pregnancy is generally avoided and should be taken only under the most needed circumstances. Newborns of mothers who are administered this drug in the last trimester of their pregnancy are prone to be born with symptoms of muscle stiffness, drowsiness and may experience difficulty in breathing and may even cry nonstop.

In nursing mothers:

The drug in Zyprexa can easily pass through the breast milk and occurrence of undesirable effects in infants born to such mothers is higher.

The bottom line:

Considering all the side effects that Zyprexa is found to be associated with, it is highly recommended to consult an expert medical professional before taking this drug.

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