Haldol Side Effects

 Haldol Side Effects

Haldol side effects spurred the FDA to recommend restrictions against prescribing antipsychotic medication to persons who also suffer from Dementia, Parkinson's Disease, and certain other conditions related to the CNS (central nervous system).


Someone who is intoxicated with alcohol, or challenged with a potassium or magnesium deficiency or imbalance, for instance, should not take Haldol or similar medication. Cough syrup, aspirin, opiates, or any substance that acts upon the CNS can interact majorly with Haldol requiring emergency medical intervention. Reports show that the number of deaths related to Haldol and interactions with thousands of other drugs have necessitated such clear warnings.

Pregnancy and Haldol

Before prescribing Haldol for pregnant women physicians should inform their patients that antipsychotic medication (especially taken in the last trimester of pregnancy) can result in possible birth defects, and the baby may suffer breathing problems after birth.

Other conditions that may present to the child are tremors, fussiness, limp muscles, stiff muscles, and feeding problems. A nursing mother should be made aware that the drug passes into the breast milk and on to the baby. Withdrawal from Haldol can also present severe difficulties if done during pregnancy. Therefore doctors are tasked with determining the least harmful course of administering this type of medication for both mother and child.

Haldol Overdose

Sometimes the drug is given in an oral tablet, and sometimes the liquid form is taken orally or can be injected. Haldol overdose can occur after ingesting too high a dose, regardless of administering methods. The following can indicate overdose and require immediate medical attention:

  • Can cause an allergic reaction that looks like hives, with swelling of the face, neck, tongue, and throat.
  • Too high a dose or if taken for too long causes Tardive Dyskenisia, an irreversible movement disorder, more common in women and older adults.
  • Akathisia (relentless compulsion to stay in motion, severe restlessness) closely resembles the agitation of psychosis, can present within a few hours of taking Haldol.

Most Common Haldol Side Effects

  • "Extrapyramidal Disorders" (Incurable uncontrollable or repetitive twisting body/muscle movements, loss of coordination, etc.)
  • Insomnia
  • Agitation
  • Cannot swallow
  • Difficulty speaking
  • Eyes cannot move
  • Stiffness in the face, masklike
  • Loss of balance
  • Spasms in the neck, back
  • Akathesia (see above)
  • Shuffles when attempting to walk
  • Muscle stiffness in limbs
  • Trembling, shaking, especially in the hands
  • Muscle twisting motions
  • Muscle weakness in arms/legs
  • Vision changes, i.e. blurred vision
  • Constipation
  • Blurred vision
  • Gaining weight

Treatments for Adverse Effects of Antipsychotic Medications

Each person has a unique history and set of health challenges, that can span from mental health to addictions, concurrent with physical, emotional and nutritional issues. A holistic program must be multifaceted, such as we deliver at the Alternative to Meds Center. We aim to assist as many areas of concern as possible. Where it is medically feasible to do so, withdrawing from and reducing medication is often a desired outcome of treatment.

We invite you to call the number on this page for more information about our residential program, designed to improve mental and emotional health using holistic, noninvasive measures. Many clients came to us after reaching hopelessness, despairing that they probably could not be helped. Their successes tell a different story. Find out more. Ask about our safe Haldol withdrawal programs for the treatment of Haldol side effects.


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