Compare chlorpromazine vs. Risperdal

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

chlorpromazine

Risperdal
(Risperidone)

Stabilizes your mood. Thorazine (chlorpromazine) has more side effects than other medicines like it. It is most useful during psychotic episodes because it slows you down quickly.Helps control your thoughts and mood. Risperdal (Risperidone) is good for treating psychosis, mania, and irritability. Among newer antipsychotic medicines, more likely to cause side effects, especially weight gain and hormone problems.
Reviews & ratings
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Have you used Thorazine (chlorpromazine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Risperdal
42%
-42% worse vs. chlorpromazine
47%
-47% worse vs. chlorpromazine
49%
+49% better vs. chlorpromazine
Have you used Risperdal (Risperidone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
chlorpromazineRisperdal

The chlorpromazine FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about chlorpromazine side effects »
  • Vision blurred 1%
  • Stomach discomfort 2%
  • Fatigue 1%
  • Lethargy 1%
  • Diarrhea 1%
  • Salivary hypersecretion 2%
  • Nausea 3%
  • Dystonia 4%
  • Tremor 3%
  • Dizziness 1%
More Risperdal side effects »
How it works
chlorpromazineRisperdal
Thorazine (chlorpromazine) is a derivative of phenothiazine, which regulates dopamine levels in your brain to improve your mood.Risperdal (Risperidone) is an atypical antipsychotic. Researchers don't know exactly how it works. It seems to change dopamine and serotonin activity in your brain, which affects thoughts and mood.
Type of medication
chlorpromazineRisperdal
Prescription onlyLower-cost generic availablePrescription onlyLower-cost generic available
Available as
chlorpromazineRisperdal
  • Pill
  • Injection
  • Pill
  • Dissolving tablet
  • Liquid
  • Injection
Used for
chlorpromazineRisperdal
Risk factors for serious side effects
chlorpromazineRisperdal
  • People over 65 with dementia and psychosis
  • Taking antipsychotic medications
  • Asthma
  • COPD
  • Acute respiratory infections
Detailed Thorazine (chlorpromazine) risks & warnings »
  • Elderly patients with dementia
  • History of heart problems
  • Drug interactions
  • People with diabetes
  • People with high cholesterol
Detailed Risperdal (Risperidone) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Alcohol
chlorpromazineRisperdal
  • Don't combine with alcohol or narcotics because it can cause you to stop breathing.
No alcohol related info.
Food
chlorpromazineRisperdal
No food related info.
  • Risperdal (Risperidone) can increase your blood sugar and cholesterol. Exercise and eat healthy food to lower your risk.
Sleep
chlorpromazineRisperdal
  • Can make you very sleepy so don't drive or do anything that requires concentration until you know how it affects you.
  • Can cause dizziness and drowsiness.
Weight
chlorpromazineRisperdal
No weight related info.
  • Risperdal (Risperidone) can cause you to gain weight. Exercise and eat healthy food to lower your risk.
  • May cause weight gain and worsen cholesterol or blood sugar.
  • Moderate risk of weight gain and problems with cholesterol or blood sugar compared to other antipsychotics.
Upsides and benefits
chlorpromazineRisperdal
  • Acts fast to slow you down during a psychotic episode.
  • Can also be used for nausea or migraines.
  • Safe for use in children as young as 6 months.
  • Comes in a sugar-coated pill for easy administration.
  • Effective at relieving psychotic symptoms, manic episodes, irritability, and aggressive behavior.
  • Lowers relapse rates in people with schizophrenia and people with irritability associated with autism.
  • Antipsychotic medicines are all about equally effective.
  • Less likely to cause heart problems than some antipsychotics.
Downsides and risks
chlorpromazineRisperdal
  • Has more side effects than other medicines like it.
  • Can affect how your other medicines work.
  • Makes you more sensitive to the sun.
  • Can make you dizzy or lightheaded, especially when injected.
  • Cannot be stopped right away.
  • Mild to moderate risk of Extrapyramidal Symptoms (EPS): Movement disorders that include stiffness, tremor, restlessness, and slow, repetitive, or involuntary movements.
  • Moderate risk of weight gain and problems with cholesterol or blood sugar compared to other antipsychotics.
  • Compared to other antipsychotics, higher risk of hormone problems that cause nipples to leak and male breasts to grow abnormally large.
  • You might need routine blood tests to check how the medicine is affecting your body.
  • All antipsychotics come with side effects that make them difficult to take. You might need to try a few different medicines until you find one that works for you and that you can tolerate.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
chlorpromazineRisperdal
  • Can make you very sleepy so don't drive or do anything that requires concentration until you know how it affects you.
  • Can cause involuntary muscle movements just like other medicines for your mood.
  • Can dry you out and make you more sensitive to the sun.
  • Don't combine with alcohol or narcotics because it can cause you to stop breathing.
  • Cannot be stopped suddenly.
  • Takes 4 to 6 weeks to see full effects on thoughts and mood.
  • Can cause dizziness and drowsiness.
  • For the first week, avoid activities that require you to be alert.
  • May cause weight gain and worsen cholesterol or blood sugar.
  • Report any unusual thoughts, inability to control muscle movements, or fever and excess sweating to your doctor.
  • Elderly people with dementia shouldn't take it.
Learn more
More about chlorpromazineSide effectsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Thorazine (chlorpromazine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about RisperdalSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Risperdal (Risperidone)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it