Zyprexa (Olanzapine)







What is Zyprexa?

Zyprexa (olanzapine) is an atypical antipsychotic medication. Exactly how it works is not known. It is thought to work by changing the actions of certain chemicals in the brain.

Zyprexa is used to treat the symptoms of psychotic conditions such as schizophrenia and bipolar disorder (manic depression) in adults and children who are at least 13 years old.

Zyprexa is sometimes used together with other antipsychotic medications or antidepressants.

Zyprexa may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Important information about Zyprexa

Zyprexa is not for use in psychotic conditions related to dementia. Zyprexa may cause heart failure, sudden death, or pneumonia in older adults with dementia-related conditions.

You may gain weight or have high cholesterol and triglycerides (types of fat) while taking this medicine, especially if you are a teenager. Your blood may need to be tested often. Visit your doctor regularly.

Zyprexa can cause high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). If you are diabetic, check your blood sugar levels on a regular basis while you are taking Zyprexa.

Zyprexa may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall.

Avoid drinking alcohol while taking Zyprexa. Avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated. Drink plenty of fluids, especially in hot weather and during exercise. It is easier to become dangerously overheated and dehydrated while you are taking Zyprexa.

Before taking Zyprexa

Zyprexa is not for use in psychotic conditions related to dementia. Zyprexa may cause heart failure, sudden death, or pneumonia in older adults with dementia-related conditions. You should not take Zyprexa if you are allergic to it.

To make sure you can safely take Zyprexa, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • liver disease;
  • heart disease, high or low blood pressure;

  • a history of low white blood cell (WBC) counts;

  • high cholesterol or triglycerides;

  • a history of heart failure, heart attack, or stroke;

  • a history of breast cancer;

  • seizures or epilepsy;

  • diabetes;

  • an enlarged prostate or difficulty urinating;

  • bowel problems; or

  • narrow-angle glaucoma.

Taking antipsychotic medication during the last 3 months of pregnancy may cause problems in the newborn, such as withdrawal symptoms, breathing problems, feeding problems, fussiness, tremors, and limp or stiff muscles. However, you may have withdrawal symptoms or other problems if you stop taking your medicine during pregnancy.

FDA pregnancy category C. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication. If you become pregnant while taking Zyprexa, do not stop taking it without your doctor's advice. Olanzapine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. You should not breast-feed while using Zyprexa.

The Zyprexa orally disintegrating tablet (Zyprexa Zydis) may contain phenylalanine. Talk to your doctor before using this form of olanzapine if you have phenylketonuria (PKU).

How should I take Zyprexa?

Take Zyprexa exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.

Zyprexa can be taken with or without food.

Zyprexa is usually taken once a day. This medicine may be only part of a complete program of treatment that also includes counseling and other psychological support programs. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve, or if they get worse while using Zyprexa. Do not stop taking Zyprexa suddenly without first talking to your doctor, even if you feel fine. You may have serious side effects if you stop taking Zyprexa suddenly.

To take olanzapine orally disintegrating tablets (Zyprexa Zydis):

  • Keep the tablet in its blister pack until you are ready to take it. Open the package and peel back the foil from the tablet blister. Do not push a tablet through the foil or you may damage the tablet.

  • Using dry hands, remove the tablet and place it in your mouth. It will begin to dissolve right away.

  • Do not swallow the tablet whole. Allow it to dissolve in your mouth without chewing.

  • Swallow several times as the tablet dissolves. If desired, you may drink liquid to help swallow the dissolved tablet.

Zyprexa can cause high blood sugar (hyperglycemia). If you are diabetic, check your blood sugar levels on a regular basis while you are taking Zyprexa.

You may gain weight or have high cholesterol and triglycerides (types of fat) while taking this medicine, especially if you are a teenager. Your blood may need to be tested often. Visit your doctor regularly.

If you are taking a combination of drugs, use all medications as directed by your doctor. Read the medication guide or patient instructions provided with each medication. Do not change your doses or medication schedule without your doctor's advice.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.




What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. Overdose symptoms may include drowsiness, agitation, aggression, slurred speech, confusion, increased heart rate, jerky or uncontrolled muscle movements, trouble breathing, or fainting.

What should I avoid while taking Zyprexa?

Zyprexa may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall.

Drinking alcohol can increase sleepiness caused by Zyprexa. Avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated. Drink plenty of fluids, especially in hot weather and during exercise. It is easier to become dangerously overheated and dehydrated while you are taking Zyprexa.

Zyprexa side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Zyprexa: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Stop using Zyprexa and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • very stiff (rigid) muscles, high fever, tremors, sweating, confusion, fast or uneven heartbeats, slow heart rate, feeling like you might pass out;

  • twitching or uncontrollable movements of your eyes, lips, tongue, face, arms, or legs;

  • trouble speaking or swallowing;

  • dry mouth, thirst, feeling very hot (with or without sweating), urinating less than usual or not at all;

  • high blood sugar (increased thirst, loss of appetite, fruity breath odor, increased urination, drowsiness, dry skin, nausea, and vomiting);

  • sudden numbness or weakness, confusion, or problems with vision, speech, or balance;

  • fever, chills, body aches, flu symptoms, sores in your mouth and throat;

  • swelling in your hands or feet;

  • changes in personality, unusual thoughts or behavior, hallucinations, or thoughts about hurting yourself; or

  • upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Less serious Zyprexa side effects may include:

  • weight gain (more likely in teenagers), increased appetite;

  • headache, dizziness, drowsiness, feeling tired or restless;

  • memory problems;

  • stomach pain, constipation, loss of bladder control;

  • back pain, pain in your arms or legs;

  • numbness or tingly feeling;

  • breast swelling or discharge (in women or men); or

  • missed menstrual periods.

This is not a complete list of Zyprexa side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect Zyprexa?

Before using Zyprexa, tell your doctor if you regularly use other medicines that can make you sleepy or slow your breathing (such as cold or allergy medicine, narcotic pain medicine, sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, and medicine for seizures, depression, or anxiety). They can add to the side effects of Zyprexa.

Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:

  • heart or blood pressure medication;

  • carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Tegretol);

  • diazepam (Valium);

  • fluoxetine and olanzapine (Symbyax);

  • fluvoxamine (Luvox);

  • omeprazole (Prilosec);

  • rifampin (Rifater, Rifadin, Rifamate); or

  • a medication to treat Parkinson's disease including levodopa (Sinemet, Larodopa, Atamet), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar), pramipexole (Mirapex), ropinirole (Requip), and others.

This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with Zyprexa. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.








Zyprexa (Olanzapine)
Zyprexa (Olanzapine)