It is very important that your doctor should check the progress of you or your child at regular visits to make sure this medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for unwanted effects. Your doctor may want also to check your heart rhythm while you are using this medicine.
You should not use this medicine if you or your child are using the following medicines: arsenic trioxide (Trisenox®), cisapride (Propulsid®), dolasetron mesylate (Anzemet®), droperidol (Dridol®, Inapsine®), levomethadyl acetate (Orlaam®), methylphenidate (Ritalin®), pemoline (Cylert®), pentamidine (Nebupent®), probucol, tacrolimus (Prograf®), zileuton (Zyflo®), amphetamines (such as Desoxyn®, Dexedrine®), medicine for heart rhythm problems (such as amiodarone, disopyramide, dofetilide, procainamide, quinidine, sotalol, Betapace®, Cardioquin®, Cordarone®, Norpace®, Procanbid®, Quinaglute®, or Tikosyn®), medicine for depression (such as amitriptyline, citalopram, escitalopram, fluoxetine, fluvoxamine, nefazodone, nortriptyline, paroxetine, sertraline, Celexa®, Elavil®, Lexapro™, Luvox®, Pamelor®, Paxil®, Prozac®, Sarafem®, Serzone®, Vivactil®, or Zoloft®), certain antibiotics (such as azithromycin, clarithromycin, dirithromycin, erythromycin, gatifloxacin, itraconazole, ketoconazole, levofloxacin, moxifloxacin, sparfloxacin, troleandomycin, Avelox®, Biaxin®, Ery-tab®, Levaquin®, Nizoral®, Sporanox®, Tao®, Tequin®, Zagam®, or Zithromax®), medicine to treat HIV infection (such as indinavir, nelfinavir, ritonavir, saquinavir, Crixivan®, Fortovase®, Invirase®, Norvir®, or Viracept®), medicine to treat malaria (such as halofantrine, mefloquine, Halfan®, or Lariam®), or medicine to treat mental illness (such as chlorpromazine, loxapine, mesoridazine, molindone, perphenazine, prochlorperazine, quetiapine, thioridazine, thiothixene, ziprasidone, Compazine®, Geodon®, Mellaril®, Serentil®, or Seroquel®). Using these medicines together with pimozide may increase risk for more serious side effects.
This medicine can cause changes in heart rhythms, such as a condition called QT prolongation. It may change the way your heart beats and cause fainting or serious side effects in some patients. Contact your doctor right away if you or your child have any symptoms of heart rhythm problems, such as fast, pounding, or uneven heartbeats.
This medicine may cause tardive dyskinesia (a movement disorder). Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor right away if you or your child have any of the following symptoms while taking this medicine: lip smacking or puckering, puffing of the cheeks, rapid or worm-like movements of the tongue, uncontrolled chewing movements, or uncontrolled movements of the arms and legs.
Check with your doctor right away if you or your child are having convulsions (seizures); difficulty with breathing; a fast heartbeat; high fever; high or low blood pressure; increased sweating; loss of bladder control; severe muscle stiffness; unusually pale skin; or tiredness. These could be symptoms of a serious condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS).
Stop using this medicine and check with your doctor if you notice any signs of fever, chills, or sore throat. These could be symptoms of an infection resulting from low white blood cell counts.
Do not suddenly stop taking this medicine without first checking with your doctor. Your doctor may want you to gradually reduce the amount you are taking before stopping completely. This will allow your body time to adjust and help to avoid worsening of your medical condition.
This medicine will add to the effects of alcohol and other CNS depressants (medicines that slow down the nervous system, possibly causing drowsiness). Some examples of CNS depressants are antihistamines or medicine for hay fever, other allergies, or colds; sedatives, tranquilizers, or sleeping medicine; prescription pain medicine or narcotics; medicine for seizures or barbiturates; muscle relaxants; or anesthetics, including some dental anesthetics. Check with your doctor before taking any of the above while you or your child are using this medicine.
This medicine may cause some people to become dizzy, drowsy, or less alert or to have blurred vision or muscle stiffness, especially as the amount of medicine is increased. Even if you take pimozide at bedtime, you may feel drowsy or less alert on arising. Make sure you know how you react to this medicine before you drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert, not able to see well, or if you do not have good muscle control.
Although not a problem for many patients, dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting may occur when you get up from a sitting or lying position. Getting up slowly may help. If the problem continues or gets worse, check with your doctor.
Before having any kind of surgery, dental treatment, or emergency treatment, tell the medical doctor or dentist in charge that you are using this medicine. Taking pimozide together with medicines that are used during surgery or dental or emergency treatment may increase the CNS depressant effects.
Pimozide may cause dryness of the mouth. For temporary relief, use sugarless gum or candy, melt bits of ice in your mouth, or use a saliva substitute. However, if your mouth continues to feel dry for more than 2 weeks, check with your medical doctor or dentist. Continuing dryness of the mouth may increase the chance of dental disease, including tooth decay, gum disease, and fungus infections.
Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor. This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements.