Seroquel (generically known as quetiapine fumarate) belongs to a group of medications called atypical (or second-generation) antipsychotic medications. Seroquel is manufactured by AstraZeneca, a London based pharmaceutical company. The FDA approved Seroquel in September 1997 to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Seroquel is a very popular psychiatric drug. Seroquel’s annual sales exceed $12 billion and Seroquel represents almost 25% of all new psychiatric drug sales.
Seroquel’s Approved Uses
The FDA approved Seroquel to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disease. Schizophrenia is a chronic, severe, and disabling brain disorder. Schizophrenics may hear voices or believe others are reading their minds or controlling their thoughts. Scientists believe schizophrenia is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors that affect the brain. An estimated 2.5 million Americans suffer from schizophrenia.
Bipolar Disorder is a brain disorder that causes sudden shifts in a person’s mood, energy, and ability to function. Patients with bipolar disorder may experience unusual euphoric moods followed by severe depression only moments later. An estimated 5.7 million people have bipolar disorder in the United States.
How does Seroquel Work?
Scientists are not entirely sure how Seroquel treats schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. Scientists know, however, that Seroquel blocks and reduces certain chemicals’ effects on the brain. These brain chemicals include dopamine and serotonin. Schizophrenics and bipolar patients may have elevated dopamine and serotonin levels. Seroquel reduces these chemical levels and helps control the disorders’ symptoms.
Seroquel’s Off-label Uses
Doctors have prescribed Seroquel for many off-label uses including:
- Obsessive Compulsion Disorder (OCD)
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
Seroquel Side Effects
Seroquel has been linked to several severe and even fatal side effects. Seroquel’s side effects include:
- Tardive Dyskinesia
- Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome
- Birth defects / Unwanted pregnancies
Contact Us about Seroquel
If you would like more information about Seroquel or its side effects, or if you or a loved one has been injured by Seroquel, please contact us today.
- Bernstein Liebhard LLP is no longer accepting Seroquel cases.