Description: Haloperidol produces calmness and reduces aggressiveness with disappearance of hallucinations and delusions.
Absorption: Readily absorbed from the GI tract (oral).
Distribution: Crosses the blood-brain barrier; enters breast milk. Protein-binding: 92%.
Metabolism: Hepatic via oxidative N-dealkylation and reduction of the ketone group; undergoes enterohepatic recycling.
Excretion: Urine and faeces; 12-38 hr (elimination half-life).

Haloperidol is used to treat certain mental/mood disorders (e.g., schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorders) that works by helping to restore the balance of certain natural substances in the brain (neurotransmitters).


This medicine helps:

  • you to think more clearly, feel less nervous, and take part in everyday life
  • prevent suicide in people who are likely to harm themselves
  • reduce aggression and the desire to hurt others
  • decrease negative thoughts and hallucinations
  • treat uncontrolled movements and outbursts of words/sounds related to Tourette’s disorder
  • for severe behavior problems in hyperactive children when other treatments or medications have not worked.




Sometimes, haloperidol may be used in hospitalized patients who have severe behavior problems or confusion for short periods of time. This medication may also be used to prevent or treat nausea and vomiting due to cancer treatment.


How to use haloperidol

Take this medication by mouth with or without food, or as directed by your doctor. If you are using the liquid form of the medication, use the measuring dropper provided in the package to measure your dose. If you do not have the dropper, ask your pharmacist for a measured oral syringe so that your dose will be correct.


Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to therapy. Use this medication regularly in order to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time(s) each day.


Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when the drug is suddenly stopped. Your dose may need to be gradually reduced.


Inform your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they worsen.

There may be a slightly increased risk of serious, possibly fatal side effects (such as heart failure, fast/irregular heartbeat, pneumonia) when this medication is used by older adults with dementia. This medication is not approved for the treatment of dementia-related behavior problems. Discuss the risks and benefits of this medication, as well as other effective and possibly safer treatments for dementia-related behavior problems, with the doctor.

Notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly if these effects persist or worsen:


  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Headache
  • Anxiety



Tell your doctor promptly if any of these side effects occur:


  • muscle spasm/stiffness
  • shaking (tremor)
  • restlessness
  • mask-like facial expression
  • drooling


Your doctor may prescribe another medication for you to take with haloperidol to decrease these side effects.


Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.


In rare cases, haloperidol may increase your level of a certain chemical made by the body (prolactin). For females, this increase in prolactin may result in unwanted breast milk, missed/stopped periods, or difficulty becoming pregnant. For males, it may result in decreased sexual ability, inability to produce sperm, or enlarged breasts. If you develop any of these symptoms, tell your doctor immediately.


Stop using this drug and seek immediate medical attention in the unlikely event you have a painful or prolonged erection (lasting more than 4 hours) for males.


Tell your doctor immediately if you develop any facial/muscle twitching such as tongue thrusting, chewing movements, puffing or puckering of your mouth, or uncontrollable shaking. It could be tardive dyskinesia which is rarely caused by this drug.


This medication may rarely cause a very serious condition called neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS). Get medical help right away if you have any of the following symptoms:


  • fever
  • muscle stiffness/pain/tenderness/weakness
  • severe tiredness
  • severe confusion
  • sweating
  • fast/irregular heartbeat
  • dark urine
  • change in the amount of urine



Tell your doctor immediately if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur:


  • persistent nausea/vomiting
  • stomach/abdominal pain
  • yellowing of eyes/skin
  • seizures
  • signs of infection (such as fever, persistent sore throat)




Seek immediate medical attention if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur:


  • slow heartbeat
  • severe dizziness
  • chest pain
  • fainting



A very severe allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but seek immediate medical attention if it occurs. Symptoms of an allergic reaction include:


  • rash
  • itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat)
  • severe dizziness
  • trouble breathing



This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Before taking haloperidol, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems.


Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: a certain severe nervous system problem (severe CNS depression), Parkinson’s disease.


Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of:


  • bipolar disorder
  • difficulty urinating (e.g., due to prostate problems)
  • glaucoma
  • heart problems (e.g., angina)
  • overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism)
  • seizures
  • low white blood cell count



Haloperidol may cause a condition that affects the heart rhythm (QT prolongation). The risk of QT prolongation may be increased if you have certain medical conditions or taking other drugs that may cause QT prolongation. Before using haloperidol, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you take and if you have any of the following conditions: certain heart problems (heart failure, slow heartbeat, QT prolongation in the EKG), family history of certain heart problems (QT prolongation in the EKG, sudden cardiac death).


This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.


Before having surgery, be sure to tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking haloperidol.


This medication can reduce sweating, making you more likely to get heatstroke. Avoid hard work and exercise in hot weather.


Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially drowsiness, difficulty urinating, and heart effects such as QT prolongation (see above).


During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Babies born to mothers who have used this drug during the last 3 months of pregnancy may infrequently develop symptoms including muscle stiffness or shakiness, drowsiness, feeding/breathing difficulties, or constant crying. If you notice any of these symptoms in your newborn especially during their first month, tell the doctor right away.


Since untreated mental/mood problems (such as schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorders) can be a serious condition, do not stop taking this medication unless directed by your doctor. If you are planning pregnancy, become pregnant, or think you may be pregnant, immediately discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using this medication during pregnancy.


This drug passes into breast milk and could have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.




Some products that may interact with this drug include:


  • anticholinergic medications (e.g., antispasmodics such as belladonna alkaloids, scopolamine)
  • cabergoline
  • carbamazepine
  • ketoconazole
  • lithium
  • methyldopa
  • drugs for Parkinson’s disease (e.g., levodopa and carbidopa, selegiline)
  • paroxetine
  • pergolide
  • quinupristin-dalfopristin



Many drugs besides haloperidol may affect the heart rhythm (QT prolongation), including amiodarone, dofetilide, pimozide, quinidine, sotalol, procainamide, macrolide antibiotics (such as erythromycin), among others. Therefore, before using haloperidol, report all medications you are currently using to your doctor or pharmacist.


Also report the use of drugs which might increase seizure risk (decrease seizure threshold) when combined with haloperidol such as:


  • isoniazid (INH)
  • phenothiazines (e.g., chlorpromazine, fluphenazine, thioridazine)
  • theophylline
  • tramadol
  • tricyclic antidepressants (e.g., amitriptyline, nortriptyline)


Consult your pharmacist or doctor for more information.


Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you also take drugs that cause drowsiness such as:


  • certain antihistamines (e.g., diphenhydramine)
  • anti-seizure medications (e.g., phenytoin, valproic acid)
  • medicine for sleep or anxiety (alprazolam, clonazepam, zolpidem)
  • muscle relaxants
  • narcotic pain relievers (e.g., codeine)
  • psychiatric medications (e.g., risperidone, trazodone).



Check the labels on all your medicines (e.g., allergy, cough-and-cold products) because they may contain drowsiness-causing ingredients. Ask your pharmacist about the safe use of those products.

If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately.



Do not share this medication with others.


Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.



Store at room temperature between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.


Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist or local waste disposal company for more details about how to safely discard your product.




Available Brands

Haldol Decanoas [ Johnson & Johnson ] Serenace [ Pfizer ]
Zuredel [ Psychotropics India ]


Also marketed as

Seredol [ Atlantic Lab ] Seredol Deca [ Atlantic Lab ]

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