How does this medication work? What will it do for me?
This medication is used to treat the symptoms of Parkinson's disease to improve muscle control and reduce stiffness. It is also used to reduce the tremor and restlessness (dyskinesia) associated with the use of some medications. It works by affecting the balance of chemicals in the central nervous system (CNS).
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed in these drug information articles. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you have not discussed this with your doctor or are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Each white tablet contains ethopropazine base 50 mg (as the hydrochloride). Nonmedicinal ingredients: acetic anhydride, carnauba wax, cellulose, colloidal silicon dioxide, dicalcium phosphate, diethyl phthalate, magnesium stearate, sodium croscarmellose, sodium oleate, titanium oxide, and zein. Tartrazine-free.
How should I use this medication?
The recommended adult dose of ethopropazine ranges from 100 mg to 500 mg daily in 2 or 3 divided doses, with or without food.
For control of tremor and restlessness associated with some medications, the usual dose to control symptoms is 100 mg twice daily. For treatment of Parkinson's disease, the medication is usually started at a lower dose (e.g., 50 mg 3 times daily) and gradually increased until relief of symptoms occurs.
Many things can affect the dose of a medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Do not dispose of medications in wastewater (e.g. down the sink or in the toilet) or in household garbage. Ask your pharmacist how to dispose of medications that are no longer needed or have expired.
Who should NOT take this medication?
Ethopropazine should not be taken by anyone who:
- is allergic to ethopropazine or to any of the ingredients of the medication
- is allergic to other phenothiazine medications (such as perphenazine, chlorpromazine, and thioridazine)
- has glaucoma
What side effects are possible with this medication?
Many medications can cause side effects. A side effect is an unwanted response to a medication when it is taken in normal doses. Side effects can be mild or severe, temporary or permanent. The side effects listed below are not experienced by everyone who takes this medication. If you are concerned about side effects, discuss the risks and benefits of this medication with your doctor.
The following side effects have been reported by at least 1% of people taking this medication. Many of these side effects can be managed, and some may go away on their own over time.
Contact your doctor if you experience these side effects and they are severe or bothersome. Your pharmacist may be able to advise you on managing side effects.
- decreased sweating
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- dryness of the mouth, nose, or throat
- increased sensitivity of the eyes to light
- nausea or vomiting
Although most of these side effects listed below don't happen very often, they could lead to serious problems if you do not check with your doctor or seek medical attention.
Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:
- blurred or double vision
- confusion or memory impairment (more common for seniors or those on high doses)
- difficult or painful urination (especially for senior men)
- eye pain
- loss of memory (especially for seniors)
- muscle cramps
- numbness or weakness in the hands or feet
- rapid heartbeat
- skin rash
- symptoms of liver problems (e.g., yellowing of the skin or eyes)
Stop taking the medication and seek immediate medical attention if any of the following occur:
- drowsiness (severe)
- hallucinations (seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there)
- shortness of breath or troubled breathing
Some people may experience side effects other than those listed. Check with your doctor if you notice any symptom that worries you while you are taking this medication.
Are there any other precautions or warnings for this medication?
Before you begin using a medication, be sure to inform your doctor of any medical conditions or allergies you may have, any medications you are taking, whether you are pregnant or breast-feeding, and any other significant facts about your health. These factors may affect how you should use this medication.
Medical conditions: People with the medical conditions such as heart disease, prostate problems, and pyloric obstruction should discuss the use of this medication with their doctor.
Pregnancy: This medication should not be used during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you become pregnant while taking this medication, contact your doctor immediately.
Breast-feeding: It is not known if ethopropazine passes into breast milk. If you are a breast-feeding mother and are taking this medication, it may affect your baby. Talk to your doctor about whether you should continue breast-feeding.
What other drugs could interact with this medication?
There may be an interaction between ethopropazine and any of the following:
- anticholinergic medications (e.g., benztropine, procyclidine)
- medications that cause drowsiness (e.g., benzodiazepines)
- tricyclic antidepressants (e.g., amitriptyline, nortriptyline)
If you are taking any of these medications, speak with your doctor or pharmacist. Depending on your specific circumstances, your doctor may want you to:
- stop taking one of the medications,
- change one of the medications to another,
- change how you are taking one or both of the medications, or
- leave everything as is.
An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of them. Speak to your doctor about how any drug interactions are being managed or should be managed.
Medications other than those listed above may interact with this medication. Tell your doctor or prescriber about all prescription, over-the-counter (non-prescription), and herbal medications you are taking. Also tell them about any supplements you take. Since caffeine, alcohol, the nicotine from cigarettes, or street drugs can affect the action of many medications, you should let your prescriber know if you use them.