Clozapine medication side effects and risks, danger by Ray Sahelian, M.D.
April 14 2015

Clozapine is an atypical anti-psychotic. The therapeutic effects of clozapine are probably mediated by dopaminergic and serotonergic activity. Although this prescription medication appears to be the most effective antipsychotic drug for treatment-resistant schizophrenia, its general use is limited because of the risk of agranulocytosis. Clozapine is manufactured by Novartis pharmaceuticals.

Side effects and risks
Clozapine induced systemic lupus erythematosus.
Ann Pharmacother. 2006. Department of Internal Medicine B, Hadassah University Hospital and Hebrew University School of Medicine, Jerusalem, Israel.
To report a case of classic clozapine -induced systemic lupus erythematosus that also developed on rechallenge. A 32-year-old white woman diagnosed with schizophrenia presented in 1996 with clinical characteristics and laboratory markers consistent with drug-induced lupus (DIL). Clozapine, started 1 year prior, was withdrawn, with complete biological and clinical remission within 3 months. In 2004, 1 week after rechallenge with clozapine for uncontrolled schizophrenia, the patient developed clinical and biological signs and symptoms consistent with the diagnosis of DIL. Again, discontinuation of clozapine was followed by full remission within 2-3 months. Although clozapine has an extensive safety profile, DIL must be considered as one of its serious adverse effects.

Case report: rapidly fatal bowel ischaemia on clozapine treatment.
BMC Psychiatry. 2006. East London and City Mental Health Trust, Department of Adult Psychiatry, Royal London Hospital, Whitechapel, London, UK.
There have been previous reported deaths due to clozapine -induced constipation. In all these cases patients have experienced prior abdominal symptoms over a period of weeks or months. We report the sudden death due to constipation of a healthy young male patient on clozapine without any known history of prior abdominal symptoms. Psychiatrists need to be alert to the medical emergencies which can occur in the context of clozapine treatment and also need to make other clinicians who may have contact with their patients aware of these.

Cutan Ocul Toxicol. 2015. The ocular surface side effects of an anti-psychotic drug, clozapine. The drug may induce dry eye syndrome and thus may lead to morphological alterations in corneal parameters through its anticholinergic and antidopaminergic activities.

Emails
Q. Do you have any information about clozapine and how it affects the hearing of voices? Do you have information as to nutrients that can be used for stress and anger? My son is taking clozapine but I don't like the side effects. I don't like it distorting the voice and how he talks to himself.
   There are several herbal supplements to reduce stress including passionflower.