Why is this medication prescribed?
Perphenazine is used to treat schizophrenia and symptoms such as hallucinations, delusions, and hostility.
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
How should this medicine be used?
Perphenazine comes as a tablet and liquid concentrate to take by mouth. It usually is taken three times a day. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take perphenazine exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor.
The liquid concentrate must be diluted before use. It comes with a specially marked dropper for measuring the dose. Ask your pharmacist to show you how to use the dropper if you have difficulty. To dilute the liquid concentrate, add it to at least 2 ounces of milk, water, or orange soda or pineapple, apricot, prune, orange, tomato, or grapefruit juice just before you take it. Do not add it to drinks with caffeine (cola, coffee), tannics (tea), or pectinates (apple juice). If any of the drink gets on the dropper, rinse the dropper with tap water before replacing it in the bottle. Do not allow the liquid concentrate to touch your skin or clothing; it can irritate your skin. If you spill the liquid concentrate on your skin, wash it off immediately with soap and water.
Continue to take perphenazine even if you feel well. Do not stop taking perphenazine without talking to your doctor, especially if you have taken large doses for a long time. Your doctor probably will decrease your dose gradually. This drug must be taken regularly for a few weeks before its full effect is felt.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking perphenazine,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to perphenazine, sulfites, or any other drugs.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially antacids, antihistamines, appetite reducers (amphetamines), benztropine (Cogentin), bromocriptine (Parlodel), carbamazepine (Tegretol), dicyclomine (Bentyl), fluoxetine (Prozac), guanethidine (Ismelin), lithium, medications for colds, medications for depression, meperidine (Demerol), methyldopa (Aldomet), phenytoin (Dilantin), propranolol (Inderal), sedatives, trihexyphenidyl (Artane), valproic acid (Depakene), and vitamins.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had depression; seizures; shock therapy; asthma; emphysema; chronic bronchitis; problems with your urinary system or prostate; glaucoma; history of alcohol abuse; thyroid problems; bad reaction to insulin; angina; irregular heartbeat; problems with your blood pressure; blood disorders; blood vessel, heart, kidney, liver, or lung disease.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking perphenazine, call your doctor.
- if you are having surgery, including dental surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are taking perphenazine.
- you should know that this drug may make you drowsy. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how this drug affects you.
- remember that alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this drug.
- plan to avoid unnecessary or prolonged exposure to sunlight and to wear protective clothing, sunglasses, and sunscreen. Perphenazine may make your skin sensitive to sunlight.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Perphenazine may cause an upset stomach. Take perphenazine with food or milk.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it and take any remaining doses for that day at evenly spaced intervals. However, if you remember a missed dose when it is almost time for your next scheduled dose, skip the missed dose. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Side effects from perphenazine are common. Your urine may turn pink or reddish-brown; this effect is not harmful. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- blurred vision
- dry mouth
- upset stomach
- weight gain
If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- restlessness or pacing
- fine worm-like tongue movements
- unusual face, mouth, or jaw movements
- shuffling walk
- seizures or convulsions
- fast, irregular, or pounding heartbeat
- difficulty urinating
- yellowing of the skin or eyes
What storage conditions are needed for this medicine?
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Protect the liquid from light. Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call your local poison controlcenter at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsedor is not breathing, call local emergency services at911.
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order certain lab tests to check your response to perphenazine.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.