BuSpar (buspirone)

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Brand Name

BuSpar {Bristol-Myers Squibb}

Generic Name

buspirone, pronounced byoo SPYE rone


What is BuSpar?

BuSpar is an anti-anxiety medication that helps by affecting the chemicals in your brain that may become unbalanced and cause anxiety. You may be prescribed BuSpar for the treatment of an anxiety disorder or for short-term relief of symptoms such as fear, tension, irritability, dizziness, and a pounding heartbeat.

BuSpar may also be used for reasons not listed in this medication guide.


Key Facts About BuSpar

BuSpar is in an anti-anxiety medication intended for short-term use only. You should not use BuSpar for longer than 4 weeks without your doctor’s approval.

You should not take BuSpar if you are currently taking an MAO inhibitor like furazolidone (Furoxone), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar), or tranylcypromine (Parnate). You could suffer from a dangerous drug interaction if you take any of the above medications along with BuSpar. You should wait at least 14 days after stopping an MAO inhibitor before starting treatment with BuSpar.

BuSpar may interact with grapefruit and grapefruit juice, causing potentially dangerous effects. Talk to your doctor about your use of grapefruit products.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. BuSpar is in FDA pregnancy category B. This medication is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. We do not know if BuSpar passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not breast-feed and take BuSpar.

You should not give BuSpar to anyone younger than 18 years old without the advice of your doctor.


Before You Take BuSpar

If you are allergic to buspirone you should not take BuSpar.

Tell your doctor if you are currently taking an MAO inhibitor like furazolidone (Furoxone), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar), or tranylcypromine (Parnate). You will need to wait at least 14 days after stopping your MAO inhibitor before you can start BuSpar.

Tell your doctor before starting BuSpar if you have liver or kidney disease.

You should be aware that drinking alcohol may increase the effects of BuSpar, so you should not drink while taking this medication.

BuSpar may impair your thinking and reaction time. Be careful when driving or doing anything that requires you to be alert, especially when you first start taking BuSpar.


BuSpar Drug Interactions

You should inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following:

  • antibiotics capreomycin (Capastat), rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, Rifater) and vancomycin (Vancocin, Vancoled)
  • calcium channel blockers like diltiazem (Tiazac, Cartia, Cardizem) and verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan)
  • dexamethasone (Decadron, Hexadrol)
  • erythromycin (E-Mycin, E.E.S., Ery-Tab, Erythrocin)
  • itraconazole (Sporanox), ketoconazole (Nizoral)
  • medications to treat to psychiatric disorders like chlorpromazine (Thorazine), haloperidol (Haldol), mesoridazine (Serentil), pimozide (Orap), and thioridazine (Mellaril)
  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane, Rifater)
  • ritonavir (Norvir)
  • seizure medications like carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Tegretol), phenytoin (Dilantin), and phenobarbital (Luminal, Solfoton)

Other drugs you take that are not listed may interact with BuSpar. You should tell your doctor about all of the medications you use. This includes prescription drugs, vitamins, supplements and herbal products, and over the counter medications. You should not begin taking a new medication without telling your doctor first.


Directions for Taking BuSpar

You should take BuSpar exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take BuSpar in larger or smaller amounts, or for shorter or longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

You should take BuSpar at the same time every day.

BuSpar may be taken with or without food, but take it the same way each time

If you have been switched to BuSpar from another anxiety medication, you may need to decrease your dose of the other medication slowly. Your doctor will tell you how you can taper down, rather than stopping suddenly. There are some anxiety medications that can cause withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking them suddenly after long-term use.

Take care when taking your dose of BuSpar, as several tablets can either be bisected or trisected. Be sure you know exactly what your doctor has prescribed for you, and if you will need to halve or third a tablet.

BuSpar needs to be stored at room temperature, and away from light, moisture and heat.

If you miss a dose of BuSpar you should attempt to take the missed dose as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose do not take the missed dose in addition to your regular dose.


BuSpar Side Effects

If you experience any of the following adverse effects you should stop taking BuSpar and seek emergency medical help immediately:

  • allergic reaction such as breathing difficulties, hives, swelling of your face, lips, throat or tongue
  • balance and coordination problems
  • depressed mood
  • faint feeling
  • fast and uneven heart rate
  • unusual thoughts or behaviors

Less serious side effects of BuSpar may include:

  • blurry vision
  • dizziness
  • drowsiness
  • insomnia
  • nausea
  • restlessness
  • stomach upset
  • trouble concentrating

It should be noted that this is not a complete list of possible side effects of BuSpar. You should contact your physician for a complete list and medical advice regarding these effects.


BuSpar Description and Dosing

BuSpar tablets are scored in a unique DIVIDOSE design, allowing for the bisection or trisection of the tablets. The tablets are available in the following dosages:

BuSpar 5 mg tablets are bisected and white, ovoid-rectangular with score, MJ logo, strength and the name BuSpar embossed on it.

BuSpar 10 mg tablets are bisected white, ovoid-rectangular with score, MJ logo, strength and the name BuSpar embossed on it.

BuSpar 15 mg tablets are able to be bisected or trisected and are white, in the DIVIDOSE tablet design and imprinted with the MJ logo.

BuSpar 30 mg tablets are able to be bisected or trisected and are pink, in the DIVIDOSE tablet design imprinted with the MJ logo.


The dose of BuSpar is based on each individual. Your doctor will tell you what dose of BuSpar is right for you and will treat your condition effectively. Do not attempt to alter or change your dose without your physician’s consent.

If you suspect that you have overdosed with BuSpar you should seek emergency help immediately.


Ingredients in BuSpar

The main active ingredient in BuSpar is buspirone. Inactive ingredients in the tablets are colloidal silicon dioxide, lactose, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, and sodium starch glycolate. The 30 mg tablet also contains iron oxide.

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The information contained in this drug guide is intended as an educational resource only. This guide is not exhaustive and does not contain all available information about this drug.This guide is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatment.

The information provided in this guide does not replace the need for the advice and services of medical professionals or the need for medical examination. Always talk to your physician or pharmacist before taking any prescription medication or over the counter drugs (including any supplements) or before making any changes to your treatment. Only your doctor, nurse or pharmacist can provide you with safe and effective advice regarding your drug treatment.

The use of the information in this guide is at your sole risk. This information is provided "AS IS" with no warranties to accuracy or timeliness.

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