Patient Education

Our Health Library information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist our patients to learn more about their health. Our providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.

olanzapine (injection)

Pronunciation: oh LAN za peen

Brand: ZyPREXA, ZyPREXA Relprevv

What is the most important information I should know about olanzapine injection?

Olanzapine injection can cause symptoms of delirium (sudden severe confusion, disorientation, agitation, problems with speech or walking), or drowsiness severe enough for you to lapse into a coma. You will be watched closely for at least 3 hours after your injection, and you should not drive for the rest of the day.

Olanzapine injection is not approved for use in older adults with dementia-related psychosis.

What is olanzapine injection?

Olanzapine is an antipsychotic medication that is used to treat symptoms of schizophrenia in adults. Olanzapine injection is not for daily use to treat any psychotic condition.

Olanzapine injection is available only under a special program. You must be registered in the program and understand the risks and benefits of using this medication.

Olanzapine injection may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before receiving olanzapine injection?

You should not receive this medication if you are allergic to olanzapine.

Olanzapine may increase the risk of death in older adults with dementia-related psychosis and is not approved for this use.

If possible before you receive olanzapine injection, tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • suicidal thoughts or actions;
  • liver disease;
  • heart disease, high or low blood pressure;
  • high cholesterol or triglycerides;
  • a stroke, including "mini-stroke";
  • breast cancer;
  • a seizure;
  • Alzheimer's disease;
  • diabetes or high blood sugar;
  • an enlarged prostate;
  • bowel problems; or
  • narrow-angle glaucoma.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant. Using antipsychotic medicine in the last 3 months of pregnancy may cause breathing problems, feeding problems, or withdrawal symptoms in the newborn.

Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding. Olanzapine can pass into breast milk and may cause side effects in the nursing baby.

In an emergency, you may not be able to tell caregivers if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Make sure any doctor caring for your pregnancy or your baby knows you received this medicine.

Olanzapine injection is not approved for use by anyone younger than 18 years old.

How is olanzapine injection given?

Olanzapine is injected into a muscle. You will receive this injection in a clinic or hospital setting.

An olanzapine injection is usually given only once. If you still have symptoms after 2 hours, your caregivers may use a second or third dose.

Olanzapine injection can cause symptoms of delirium (sudden severe confusion, disorientation, agitation, problems with speech or walking), or drowsiness severe enough for you to lapse into a coma. You will be watched closely for at least 3 hours after your injection.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since olanzapine injection is given by a healthcare professional in an emergency setting, you are not likely to miss a dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Since this medication is given by a healthcare professional in a medical setting, an overdose is unlikely to occur.

What should I avoid after receiving olanzapine injection?

Avoid drinking alcohol. Dangerous side effects could occur.

Olanzapine can cause severe drowsiness and may impair your thinking or reactions. You must remain at the healthcare facility for at least 3 hours after your injection, and you should not drive for the rest of the day.

Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Dizziness or severe drowsiness can cause falls, fractures, or other injuries.

What are the possible side effects of olanzapine injection?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Seek medical treatment if you have a serious drug reaction that can affect many parts of your body. Symptoms may include: skin rash, fever, swollen glands, flu-like symptoms, muscle aches, severe weakness, unusual bruising, or yellowing of your skin or eyes.

Olanzapine injection can cause serious symptoms if the medicine gets into your bloodstream too fast. During the first 3 hours after your injection you will be watched for the following signs:

  • severe dizziness, drowsiness, or weakness;
  • confusion, anxiety, feeling angry or hostile;
  • feeling nervous or shaky;
  • trouble walking or talking;
  • seizure (convulsions); or
  • a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • twitching or uncontrollable movements of your eyes, lips, tongue, face, arms, or legs;
  • trouble speaking or swallowing;
  • signs of dehydration --if you feel very thirsty or hot, are unable to urinate, and have heavy sweating or hot and dry skin;
  • high blood sugar --increased thirst, increased urination, hunger, dry mouth, fruity breath odor; or
  • severe nervous system reaction --very stiff (rigid) muscles, high fever, sweating, confusion, fast or uneven heartbeats, tremors.

Common side effects may include:

  • headache, back pain;
  • weight gain (more likely in teenagers), increased appetite;
  • drowsiness;
  • dry mouth, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea;
  • sinus pain, runny or stuffy nose, cough; or
  • pain where the injection was given.

This is not a complete list of 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 olanzapine injection?

Using olanzapine with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can cause dangerous or life-threatening side effects. Ask your doctor before using opioid medication, a sleeping pill, a muscle relaxer, or medicine for anxiety or seizures.

Other drugs may affect olanzapine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Where can I get more information?

Your doctor or pharmacist can provide more information about olanzapine injection.

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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