Seroquel – Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia

As explained in an earlier article, Schizophrenia, is defined by the National Institute of Mental Health as a chronic and severe mental disorder that affects how a person thinks, feels, and behaves. While this mental disorder may not be common, its symptoms are such that people who suffer from it exhibit psychotic behaviors, hallucinate, become delusional, think in unusual ways, speak with emotionless voices and tone, experience movement disorders, find it difficult to begin and sustain daily activities and show no pleasure when involved in activities that they normally enjoy. It is experienced in people from age 13 and above.

Bipolar disorder is a condition that is characterized by periods of abnormally elevated mood and energy, accompanied by abnormal behavior that disrupts life. These abnormally elevated moods are referred to as manic episodes (WebMD). Bipolar disorders are of different types and can affect anyone, most specifically through bouts of depression. Seroquel is an atypical antipsychotic medication that quells the symptoms of schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. It helps to correct chemical imbalances in the brain, thereby improving the functions of neurotransmitters. Seroquel helps to decrease hallucinations and improves concentration. It decreases nervousness and anxiety and also effectively improves sleep cycles, appetite, moods and even energy levels. Seroquel, Seroquel XR, Quetiapine can also prevent severe behavior changes, the frequency of mood swings and can even help prevent them. Seroquel, Seroquel XR, and Quetiapine or its brand names and variations, are not recommended for use by people below the age of 18.

Properties of Seroquel

Seroquel, also called quetiapine fumarate is a psychotropic agent that belongs to a chemical class of dibenzothiazepine derivatives. With a molecular formula of C42H50N6O4S2•C4H4O4 and a molecular weight of 883.11, Seroquel is present in tablets as the fumarate salt. The powder ranges from a white to off-white crystalline powder which is soluble in water, howbeit moderately. Also, all doses and tablet strengths are not expressed as fumarate salts but as base milligrams.

The structural formula is:

Dosages of Seroquel are 25 mg (round, peach) which contain red ferric oxide and yellow ferric oxide, 50 mg (round, white), 100 mg (round, yellow) which contain yellow ferric oxide, 200 mg (round, white), 300 mg (capsule-shaped, white), and 400 mg (capsule-shaped, yellow) tablets which contain yellow ferric oxide. These dosages are recommended by a doctor depending on the seriousness of schizophrenia or bipolar disorder.

Side Effects, Precautions, and Warnings

Insomnia, vomiting, missed menstrual periods, constipation, nausea, weight gain, exhaustion, sore throat, dry mouth, breast swelling or discharge, stomach upset or pain, mood and behavior changes are some of the side effects of using Seroquel. Taking lots of water and fluids, lozenges or mouthwash for the dry mouth, eating balanced diets can help to curtail the side effects of the medication.

You should also inform your doctor if you have had any allergic reactions or other infections and health problems in the past. Older adults who have been diagnosed with dementia must NOT take the drug as it can increase the risk of mortality.It is advisable to stop using the medicine and call your doctor if you experience these symptoms, among others.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Can I skip a dose or take two at once?
No, you should not skip on it unless your doctor tells you to. You should also not take two doses at once; take the missed dose only at the time prescribed.

Where can I purchase the drug?
The drug can only be prescribed by a doctor since it is an extended release medication.

What should I do if I experience symptoms that I can’t manage?
You should inform your doctor immediately if you feel any of the side effects listed in this article, or call emergency care.