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Olanzapine (By mouth)

Treats psychotic mental disorders, such as schizophrenia or bipolar disorder (manic-depressive illness).

What works?

Learn more about the effects of these drugs. The most reliable research is summed up for you in our featured article.

Olanzapine is used to treat nervous, emotional, and mental conditions (eg, schizophrenia). It may also be used alone or with other medicines (eg, lithium or valproate) to treat bipolar disorder (manic-depressive illness) or mania that is part of bipolar disorder. This medicine should not be used to treat behavioral problems in older adult patients who have dementia or Alzheimer's disease. This… Read more
Other forms
By injection
Drug classes About this
Antipsychotic
Combinations including this drug

What works? Research summarized

Evidence reviews

Olanzapine compared to placebo or other medicine as treatment for mania

High withdrawal rates from the trials limit the confidence that can be placed on the results. Olanzapine was superior to placebo in reduction of manic symptoms both as monotherapy and combined with mood stabilizers, though caused weight gain. Olanzapine was more efficacious than divalproex and caused less nausea but more weight gain, somnolence and movement disorders. Olanzapine was comparable to haloperidol in efficacy, caused less movement disorders but greater weight gain.

Olanzapine in long‐term treatment for bipolar disorder

Bipolar affective disorder is a severe and common mental illness, characterised by periods of mania, depression and "mixed episodes" (or "dysphoric mania": a mixture of manic and depressed symptoms). Antipsychotic drugs are often used to treat acute manic episodes and one commonly used antipsychotic drug that has recently been approved for use in mania in USA and Europe is olanzapine. This review considered the efficacy, acceptability and adverse effects of olanzapine in long‐term treatment of bipolar disorder in comparison with placebo or other active drug comparisons. Five trials (1165 participants) met the inclusion criteria and are included in the review. Based on a limited amount of information, olanzapine may prevent further mood episodes (especially manic relapse) in patients who responded to olanzapine during an index manic or mixed episode and who have not previously had a satisfactory response to lithium or valproate. The olanzapine group had significantly fewer patients suffering from insomnia than the placebo group, but a significantly larger number of people suffering from weight gain. When compared with lithium, olanzapine caused more weight gain and depressive symptoms but fewer insomnia and nausea symptoms and a lower rate of manic worsening. However, considering the lack of clear findings of this review, conclusions on efficacy and acceptability of olanzapine compared to placebo, lithium or valproate cannot be made with any degree of confidence

Risperidone versus olanzapine for schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is a debilitating mental illness that affects about one percent of the population worldwide.

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Summaries for consumers

Olanzapine compared to placebo or other medicine as treatment for mania

High withdrawal rates from the trials limit the confidence that can be placed on the results. Olanzapine was superior to placebo in reduction of manic symptoms both as monotherapy and combined with mood stabilizers, though caused weight gain. Olanzapine was more efficacious than divalproex and caused less nausea but more weight gain, somnolence and movement disorders. Olanzapine was comparable to haloperidol in efficacy, caused less movement disorders but greater weight gain.

Olanzapine in long‐term treatment for bipolar disorder

Bipolar affective disorder is a severe and common mental illness, characterised by periods of mania, depression and "mixed episodes" (or "dysphoric mania": a mixture of manic and depressed symptoms). Antipsychotic drugs are often used to treat acute manic episodes and one commonly used antipsychotic drug that has recently been approved for use in mania in USA and Europe is olanzapine. This review considered the efficacy, acceptability and adverse effects of olanzapine in long‐term treatment of bipolar disorder in comparison with placebo or other active drug comparisons. Five trials (1165 participants) met the inclusion criteria and are included in the review. Based on a limited amount of information, olanzapine may prevent further mood episodes (especially manic relapse) in patients who responded to olanzapine during an index manic or mixed episode and who have not previously had a satisfactory response to lithium or valproate. The olanzapine group had significantly fewer patients suffering from insomnia than the placebo group, but a significantly larger number of people suffering from weight gain. When compared with lithium, olanzapine caused more weight gain and depressive symptoms but fewer insomnia and nausea symptoms and a lower rate of manic worsening. However, considering the lack of clear findings of this review, conclusions on efficacy and acceptability of olanzapine compared to placebo, lithium or valproate cannot be made with any degree of confidence

Risperidone versus olanzapine for schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is a debilitating mental illness that affects about one percent of the population worldwide.

See all (61)

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