BuSpar (Buspirone) Patient Information
Find out why BuSpar is prescribed, side effects of BuSpar, BuSpar warnings, effects of BuSpar during pregnancy, more - in plain English.
Generic name: Buspirone hydrochloride
Brand name: BusPar
Why is BuSpar prescribed?
BuSpar is used in the treatment of anxiety disorders and for short-term relief of the symptoms of anxiety.
Most important fact about BuSpar
BuSpar should not be used with antidepressant drugs known as monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors. Brands include Nardil and Parnate.
How should you take BuSpar?
Take BuSpar exactly as prescribed. Do not be discouraged if you feel no immediate effect. The full benefit of this drug may not be seen for 1 to 2 weeks after you start to take it.
--If you miss a dose...
Take the forgotten dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Never take 2 doses at the same time.
Store at room temperature in a tightly closed container, away from light.
What side effects may occur when taking BuSpar?
Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking BuSpar.
More common side effects of BuSpar may include: Dizziness, dry mouth, fatigue, headache, light-headedness, nausea, nervousness, unusual excitement
Less common or rare side effects may include: Anger/hostility, blurred vision, bone aches/pain, confusion, constipation, decreased concentration, depression, diarrhea, fast, fluttery heartbeat, incoordination, muscle pain/aches, numbness, pain or weakness in hands or feet, rapid heartbeat, rash, restlessness, stomach and abdominal upset, sweating/clamminess, tingling or pins and needles, tremor, urinary incontinence, vomiting, weakness
Why should this drug not be prescribed?
If you are sensitive to or have ever had an allergic reaction to BuSpar or similar mood-altering drugs, you should not take this medication. Make sure your doctor is aware of any drug reactions you have experienced.
Anxiety or tension related to everyday stress usually does not require treatment with BuSpar. Discuss your symptoms thoroughly with your doctor.
The use of BuSpar is not recommended if you have severe kidney or liver damage.
Special warnings about BuSpar
The effects of BuSpar on the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) are unpredictable. Therefore, you should not drive or operate dangerous machinery or participate in any hazardous activity that requires full mental alertness while you are taking BuSpar.
Possible food and drug interactions when taking BuSpar
Although BuSpar does not intensify the effects of alcohol, it is best to avoid alcohol while taking this medication.
If BuSpar is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either can be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining BuSpar with the following:
The blood-thinning drug Coumadin Haloperidol (Haldol) MAO inhibitors (antidepressant drugs such as Nardil and Parnate) Trazodone (Desyrel)
Special information if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
The effects of BuSpar during pregnancy have not been adequately studied. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. It is not known whether BuSpar appears in breast milk. If this medication is essential to your health, your doctor may advise you to discontinue breastfeeding until your treatment is finished.
Recommended dosage for BuSpar
The recommended starting dose is a total of 15 milligrams per day divided into smaller doses, usually 5 milligrams 3 times a day. Every 2 to 3 days, your doctor may increase the dosage 5 milligrams per day as needed. The daily dose should not exceed 60 milligrams.
The safety and effectiveness of BuSpar have not been established in children under 18 years of age.
Any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. If you suspect an overdose of BuSpar, seek medical attention immediately.
The symptoms of BuSpar overdose may include: Dizziness, drowsiness, nausea or vomiting, severe stomach upset, unusually small pupils.
Last Updated: 23 January 2019
Reviewed by Harry Croft, MD