Clozapine alternatives are available if you are experiencing bothersome side effects or if the medication is not adequately controlling your symptoms. These alternatives can include therapy and medications (such as other atypical antipsychotics and typical antipsychotics). The newer antipsychotic medications used as clozapine alternatives may have fewer serious side effects than older, typical antipsychotics, although studies have shown conflicting results.
An Overview of Clozapine AlternativesClozapine (Clozaril®, FazaClo®) is a prescription medicine that has been licensed to treat schizophrenia.
The drug is part of a group of atypical, or second-generation, antipsychotics. It is generally quite effective at treating the symptoms of schizophrenia. Most people also tolerate the medication well. However, as with all medicines, side effects can occur during treatment, or the medicine may not adequately control a person's symptoms. Fortunately, several alternatives to clozapine are available for schizophrenia treatment, including:
- Other medications.
Therapy as a Clozapine AlternativeIt is unlikely that therapy alone can replace the need for medication in people who have schizophrenia. However, therapy can be an important part of a well-rounded treatment plan. Numerous studies have found that psychosocial treatments as part of an overall schizophrenia treatment plan can be quite helpful. This therapy helps people who are already stabilized on antipsychotic medication deal with certain aspects of schizophrenia, such as difficulty with:
- Establishing and maintaining relationships with others.
(For more information, see Psychosocial Therapy for Schizophrenics.)