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Lorazepam

Generic name: lorazepam (oral) [lor-A-ze-pam]
Brand names: Ativan, Lorazepam Intensol, and Loreev XR.
Dosage Forms: Oral capsule, extended-release (1 mg; 1,5 mg; 2 mg and 3 mg), orally concentrated (2 mg/mL),…show all 3 dosage forms
Drug classes: benzodiazepine anticonvulsants, benzodiazepines, and miscellaneous antiemetics

What is Lorazepam?

Lorazepam is a member of a group of drugs called benzodiazepines. It is believed that benzodiazepines increase the activity of neurotransmitters within the brain.Lorazepam can be used to treat anxiety disorders in children and adults over 12 years of age.Loreev XR capsules with extended release are only used for treating anxiety disorders in adults.Lorazepam can also be used to treat insomnia that is caused by temporary anxiety or situational stress.Lorazepam can be used to treat nausea or vomiting caused by cancer treatments and to calm agitation due to alcohol withdrawal.

Warnings

Lorazepam may slow or stop breathing. This is especially true if you've recently taken an opioid, alcohol, or another drug that slows breathing. These effects are potentially fatal.Misuse can cause addiction, overdose, or death. This medicine should be kept out of the reach of others.Lorazepam can be addictive and should only be taken by the individual who is prescribed it. This medication should not be given to anyone else, especially if they have a history of addiction or drug abuse.You should not stop taking lorazepam before consulting your doctor. If you suddenly stop taking the medication after long-term usage, you may experience life-threatening symptoms. Some withdrawal symptoms can last for up to a year or more.Seek medical attention immediately if you experience symptoms like abnormal muscle movements, increased activity or talkativeness, sudden and severe mood or behavioural changes, confusion, hallucinations, or seizures.Avoid using lorazepam while pregnant. It can cause birth defects and life-threatening withdrawal symptoms in newborns.This medicine should not be used if you suffer from narrow-angle glaucoma or severe respiratory problems, have myasthenia graveis, or are allergic to Valium.

Before you take this drug

If you are suffering from:

  • Narrow-angle glaucoma;
  • A history of an allergic reaction to a benzodiazepine, such as valium, diazepam (xanax), versed, klonopin, and others

Tell your doctor about any of the following to ensure that lorazepam will be safe for you:

  • Asthma;chronic obstructive lung disease; sleep disorder; or any other breathing disorder.
  • Drug or alcohol abuse;
  • Depression or psychosis, mood changes or suicidal ideas and actions.
  • Seizures;
  • An allergy to yellow food dye or aspirin
  • Kidney or liver disease

Inform your doctor that you are or will be pregnant. Your baby may be born with withdrawal symptoms that are life-threatening and require medical attention for weeks.You may find your name on a registry for pregnant women to monitor the effects of lorazepam.Breastfeeding is not recommended.Tell your doctor if the baby is not gaining weight or you are experiencing feeding difficulties.

How to take lorazepam?

Read all instructions and directions that come with your medication. Read all the instructions and directions that come with your prescription. Do not use more lorazepam or longer than prescribed. If you find yourself wanting to take more lorazepam, tell your doctor.Do not share this medication with anyone, especially if they have a history of addiction to drugs. Misuse can cause overdose or death. Store the medicine in a place where others can't get it. It is illegal to sell or give away this medicine.Use the measuring device provided (not the kitchen spoon) to measure the oral concentrate. Mix the liquid in water, with juices, with sodas or similar beverages, or even with semi-solid foods like applesauce and puddings. This mixture should be swallowed immediately.Do not open, crush, chew, or break the capsule.If you can't swallow the capsule in its entirety, mix it with applesauce. The mixture should be swallowed immediately without chewing.You should not stop taking lorazepam before consulting your doctor. If you suddenly stop taking the medication after long-term usage, you may experience life-threatening symptoms.Store tightly closed, at room temperature, and away from moisture or heat.Keep the liquid of this medication in the fridge. Any liquid that has not been used in 90 days should be thrown away.Keep your medication in a safe place so that no one else can misuse it.

Details on dosage

Adult dose for anxiety:

Initial dose: orally, 2 to 3 mg per day.
Maintenance dose: orally, 1 to 2 mg 2 to 3 times a day.

Usual adult dose for insomnia:

Orally, 2 to 4 mg once or twice a day before bedtime
comments:
to avoid side effects, the dosage should be gradually increased.
This drug has not been evaluated in clinical studies for its efficacy over a long-term period of time (e.g., more than four months).
Treatment of insomnia caused by anxiety or transient situational stress

The usual geriatric dose for anxiety:

Patients who are older or have a debilitating condition:
initial dose: 1 mg to 2mg orally daily, divided into two doses.

The usual paediatric dose for anxiety is:

Twelve years of age or older
initial dosage: 2 to 3 mg orally daily, given twice to three times per day.
Maintenance dosage: 1 to 2mg orally, 2 to 3 times per day.
The daily dose can vary between 1 and 10 mg/day.
To avoid side effects, the dosage should be gradually increased.
When a higher dose is required, the evening dosage should be increased first before the doses taken during the day.
It is not necessary to use anxiolytics for the treatment of anxiety or tension caused by everyday stress.
This drug has not been evaluated in clinical studies for its efficacy over a long-term period of time (e.g., more than four months).

Usual paediatric dose for insomnia:

Twelve years and older: orally, 2 to 4 mg once daily at bedtime
comments:
for debilitated individuals, a divided dosage of between 1 and 2 mg/day is recommended.
To avoid side effects, the dosage should be gradually increased.
This drug has not been evaluated in clinical studies for its efficacy over a long-term period of time (e.g., more than four months).

What happens if i miss the dose?

If you are almost due for your next dose, skip the missed one. Never take two doses of the same medicine at once.

What happens if i overdose?

Call the poison help line at 1-800-222-1222 or seek emergency medical care. A lorazepam overdose can be fatal, especially if you are also drinking alcohol or using other drugs that cause drowsiness and slow breathing.Overdose symptoms include drowsiness or confusion, difficulty speaking, muscle weakness or loss of coordination, feeling lightheaded, slow heartbeats or breathing, or even coma.

What should be avoided?

Don't drink alcohol. Side effects and death can occur.Do not drive or engage in hazardous activities until you have a better understanding of how lorazepam affects you. Dizziness and drowsiness may cause accidents or serious injuries.

Side effects of lorazepam

If you experience any of the following symptoms of an allergy to lorazepam, seek immediate medical attention: difficulty breathing, swelling of your lips, face, tongue, or throat.Lorazepam may slow or stop breathing, particularly if you've recently consumed alcohol or an opioid drug. If you have long pauses in your breathing, blue lips, or are hard to awaken, someone caring for you may need to seek immediate medical attention.

Lorazepam can cause serious side effects. If you experience:

  • Severe drowsiness;
  • Unusual changes in mood and behaviour include being agitated, talkative, or irritable.
  • Feeling of excitement or restlessness;
  • Suicide, seizures, mental disorders (depression, thought disorders), or thoughts about harming oneself;
  • Confusion, aggression, hallucinations;
  • Sleep problems (insomnia);
  • Vision changes
  • Dark urine, or jaundice, is a yellowing of the skin and eyes.

Older adults may experience drowsiness and dizziness for a longer period of time. Avoid falling or causing an accident.

Lorazepam may cause the following side effects:

  • Dizziness, sedation, and drowsiness;
  • A weakness
  • Feeling unsteady.

Your blood count and liver function will be checked regularly by blood tests.If you experience any of the following symptoms after stopping lorazepam: abnormal muscle movements, increased activity or talkativeness, sudden and severe mood or behavioural changes, confusion, hallucinations or seizures, or suicidal thoughts, seek immediate medical attention.Some withdrawal symptoms can last for up to 12 or more months after abruptly stopping the medicine. If you experience anxiety or depression, memory or thinking problems, difficulty sleeping, ringing or prickly sensations in your ears or under your skin, or have trouble concentrating, tell your doctor.There may be other side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. The fda can be contacted at 1-800-fda-1088 to report side effects.

Interaction with other drug

Do not take lorazepam along with drugs that cause breathing problems. This can lead to dangerous side effects, even death.

You should tell your doctor about any medications you take, such as:

  • Valproate, probenecid, aminophylline, or theophylline;
  • Medicine to treat mental illness
  • Medicine that contains antihistamines (such as cold, allergy, or sleep medication)

This list does not include all possible interactions with lorazepam. These include prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.The list is not exhaustive.

 

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