Is Compazine a narcotic? 

Is Compazine a narcotic? 

No, Compazine (Prochlorperazine) is not a narcotic medication or a controlled substance in general. This medication does not induce euphoria or get you high. It doesn’t chemically resemble any of the narcotic drugs either. 

However, Compazine is still misused because of its sedative properties. It doesn’t matter if the drug is narcotic or not, excessive intake can cause disturbing side effects and damage your entire health – including your psychological health. 

Compazine, although it is not a narcotic, is prescribed carefully. Make sure you take this medication only if prescribed by your healthcare provider and do not exceed the recommended dose. 

How is Compazine different from narcotics?

Compazine is used to alleviate nausea and vomiting triggered by a variety of illnesses, including migraine headaches, chemotherapy, and surgery. It functions by preventing the brain’s dopamine receptors from functioning, which lessens nausea and vomiting (1).

Narcotics, on the other hand, are pain relievers. They do so by attaching to certain receptors in the brain and spinal cord. Moreover, narcotics can affect the body in various ways, as they can impair breathing and cause drowsiness, constipation, and respiratory depression.

One of the main differences between Compazine and narcotics is their clinical efficacy and the reasons why they are prescribed. Compazine is used for nausea and vomiting, while narcotics are primarily used for pain relief. 

Moreover, narcotics have a higher potential for addiction and abuse compared to Compazine, which is not typically considered a controlled substance.

Can Compazine harm your body?

Compazine, like every other medication on this planet, can cause a number of side effects, which may be more pronounced if you misuse the medication. The side effects include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Dizziness
  • Dry mouth
  • Blurred vision
  • Constipation
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety or agitation
  • Skin rash or itching
  • Urinary retention
  • Nasal congestion

Less common but more serious side effects of Compazine can include:

  • Neuroleptic malignant syndrome (NMS): a rare but potentially life-threatening condition characterized by fever, muscle rigidity, and mental status changes.
  • Tardive dyskinesia: a condition characterized by involuntary movements of the face and body, which can be irreversible.
  • Extrapyramidal symptoms (EPS): a group of movement disorders that can include tremors, muscle stiffness, and muscle spasms.
  • Seizures or convulsions
  • Blood disorders, including agranulocytosis, leukopenia, and thrombocytopenia
  • Allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis

Make sure you use this medication just as directed by your healthcare provider. In case you suffer from any of the serious side effects, reach out to your healthcare provider right away. 

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PubChem [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US), National Center for Biotechnology Information; 2004-. PubChem Compound Summary for CID 4917, Prochlorperazine; [cited 2023 Feb. 11]. Available from: