Ah Stelazine, or to be technically correct Trifluoperazine, what an interesting & nifty drug.

This is not a factual node about the history of Stelazine, but rather some recollections of my fairly frequent consumption of this little pharmaceutical and the benefits and trouble that it has got me into.

First of all, this is a drug primarily used to fight schizophrenia - a condition that I do not possess. However, it has proven its usefulness as an anti-anxiety drug, and I have plenty of that. So my doctor after putting me on various courses of Remereon, Valium, Zoloft, Xanax and Ambien decided to give the little blue pills a shot.

My first hint of this being an interesting turn of events was my difficulty of finding a pharmacist that actually stocked them - I had to travel to three different pharmacies in the city center - and I live in the second largest city of Australia. Once I finally found someone who would sell it to me, I was instructed to wait while the pharmacist called my doctor to ensure that he had not made a mistake of prescribing it to me. After covering his ass, I was quickly given a box of 100 pills of Stelazine manufactured by the good people of Goldshield Pharmaceuticals.

Now you may ask why the pharmacist was concerned about filling the prescription. Is it addictive and going to get me high? No, no, it just kills people. Here is a conservative list of the potential side effects of Stelazine as provided by the good old FDA:

Side effects of Stelazine may include: Abnormal secretion of milk, abnormal sugar in urine, abnormalities in movement and posture, agitation, allergic reactions (sometimes severe), anemia, asthma, blood disorders, blurred vision, body rigidly arched backward, breast development in males, chewing movements, constipation, constricted pupils, difficulty swallowing, dilated pupils, dizziness, drooling, drowsiness, dry mouth, ejaculation problems, exaggerated or excessive reflexes, excessive or spontaneous flow of milk, eye problems causing a state of fixed gaze, eye spasms, fatigue, fever or high fever, flu-like symptoms, fluid accumulation and swelling (including the brain), fragmented movements, headache, heart attack, high or low blood sugar, hives, impotence, inability to urinate, increase in appetite and weight, infections, insomnia, intestinal blockage, involuntary movements of tongue, face, mouth, jaw, arms, and legs, irregular blood pressure, pulse, and heartbeat, irregular or no menstrual periods, jitteriness, light-headedness (especially when standing up), liver damage, lockjaw, loss of appetite, low blood pressure, mask-like face, muscle stiffness and rigidity, nasal congestion, nausea, persistent, painful erections, pill-rolling movement, protruding tongue, puckering of mouth, puffing of cheeks, purple or red spots on the skin, rapid heartbeat, restlessness, rigid arms, feet, head, and muscles, seizures, sensitivity to light, shuffling walk, skin inflammation and peeling, skin itching, pigmentation, reddening, or rash, spasms in jaw, face, tongue, neck, hands, feet, back, and mouth, sweating, swelling of the throat, totally unresponsive state, tremors, twisted neck, weakness, yellowing of skin and whites of eyes.

Nifty yes?

Regardless, I took my prescription of 200mg a day, and quickly discontinued. It made me drowsy like crazy and I could not get any work done, so I moved back to the Zoloft.

However, I did need to get my money out of it, so I did as any reasonable person would do, I started to experiment with the drug to see how I could use it effectively in my life. I found out that while at lower doses it made me still sleepy, it made me strangely clear minded. I have found it quite effective when combined with a stimulant at completing exams and other work that requires some brain power.

It has not all been good times though with the drug. You see loyal readers, I once had a friend who liked to partake in my masses of prescription drugs scattered around my apartment (a great deal of Valium disappeared after a previous visit). So one time, he thought he would sample 3 pills of Stelazine.

I did warn him about the risks, and it did not end up well for him.

It turns out that the next day he started screaming randomly at work while clutching his face and then passed out. He ended up spending a few days in hospital. When he informed his doctor of what he had taken, her response was that he was lucky that he had not ended up far worse off.

He learnt a valuable lesson, and I now keep my prescriptions safely locked away so only I can enjoy them.

Recommendation: Stay far, far away from Stelazine.

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