FM/CFS/ME RESOURCES - Drug Database - Lorazepam

 

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Drug Database - Lorazepam Lorazepam 1 mg. tablet

Generic Name: lorazepam (lor-A-ze-pam)

Brand Names: Ativan®

Classification: Benzodiazepine

Issue Date: 1989

Lorazepam is in a group of drugs called benzodiazepines (ben-zoe-dye-AZE-eh-peens). Lorazepam affects chemicals in the brain that may become unbalanced and cause anxiety. Lorazepam is used to treat anxiety disorders. Lorazepam may also be used for purposes other than those listed here.

  • Before Using This Medicine
  • How To Use This Medicine
  • Precautions While on this Medicine
  • Side Effects
  • Overdosage
  • Drug Interactions
  • Divider
    Before Using This Medicine

    Do not use this medication if you are allergic to Lorazepam or to other benzodiazepines such as:

    • alprazolam (Xanax®)
    • chlordiazepoxide (Librium®)
    • clorazepate (Tranxene®)
    • diazepam (Valium®)
    • oxazepam (Serax®)

    This medication can cause birth defects in an unborn baby. Do not use Lorazepam if you are pregnant.

    Before taking Lorazepam, tell your doctor if you have:

    • any breathing problems
    • glaucoma
    • kidney or liver disease
    • a history of depression, suicidal thoughts
    • or addiction to drugs or alcohol

    Do not drink alcohol while taking Lorazepam. This medication can increase the effects of alcohol.

    Avoid using other medicines that make you sleepy. They can add to sleepiness caused by Lorazepam.

    Lorazepam may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Lorazepam should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it.

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    How To Use This Medicine

    Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

    Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results from this medication.

    Measure the liquid form of Lorazepam with a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

    Lorazepam should be used for only a short time. Do not take this medication for longer than 4 months without your doctor's advice.

    Lorazepam may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Lorazepam should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it.

    Contact your doctor if this medicine seems to stop working as well in treating your symptoms.

    Do not stop using Lorazepam suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

    Your symptoms may return when you stop using Lorazepam after using it over a long period of time. You may also have seizures or withdrawal symptoms when you stop using Lorazepam.

    Withdrawal symptoms may include:

    • tremor
    • sweating
    • muscle cramps
    • stomach pain
    • vomiting
    • unusual thoughts or behavior
    • seizure (convulsions)

    To be sure this medication is not causing harmful effects, your doctor may need to check your progress on a regular basis. Do not miss any scheduled visits to your doctor.

    Store Lorazepam at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

    Keep track of how many pills have been used from each new bottle of this medicine. Benzodiazepines are drugs of abuse and you should be aware if any person in the household is using this medicine improperly or without a prescription.

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    Precautions While on this Medicine

    Before taking Lorazepam, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

    • narrow-angle glaucoma
    • asthma, emphysema, bronchitis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD)
    • history of depression or suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • history of drug or alcohol addiction
    • allergic to Lorazepam or to other benzodiazepines, such as:
      • alprazolam (Xanax®)
      • chlordiazepoxide (Librium®)
      • clorazepate (Tranxene®)
      • diazepam (Valium®)
      • oxazepam (Serax®)

    If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to use Lorazepam, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.

    Lorazepam can cause birth defects in an unborn baby. Do not use Lorazepam without your doctor's consent if you are pregnant. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment. Use an effective form of birth control while you are using this medication.

    It is not known whether Lorazepam passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

    The sedative effects of Lorazepam may last longer in older adults. Accidental falls are common in elderly patients who take benzodiazepines. Use caution to avoid falling or accidental injury while you are taking Lorazepam.

    Do not give this medication to a child younger than 12 years old.

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    If You Miss A Dose

    Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take the medicine at your next regularly scheduled time. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

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    Side Effects

    Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction:

    • skin rash or hives
    • difficulty breathing
    • swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat

    Call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

    • confusion, depressed mood, thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself
    • hyperactivity, agitation, hostility
    • hallucinations
    • feeling light-headed, fainting

    Less serious side effects are more likely to occur, such as:

    • drowsiness, dizziness, tiredness
    • blurred vision
    • sleep problems (insomnia)
    • muscle weakness, lack of balance or coordination
    • amnesia or forgetfulness, trouble concentrating
    • nausea, vomiting, constipation
    • appetite changes
    • skin rash

    Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

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    Drug Interactions

    Before taking Lorazepam, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:

    • amobarbital (Amytal®)
    • butabarbital (Butisol®)
    • mephobarbital (Mebaral®)
    • secobarbital (Seconal®)
    • phenobarbital (Luminal®, Solfoton®)
    • isocarboxazid (Marplan®)
    • phenelzine (Nardil®)
    • rasagiline (Azilect®)
    • selegiline (Eldepryl®, Emsam®)
    • tranylcypromine (Parnate®)
    • chlorpromazine (Thorazine®)
    • haloperidol (Haldol®)
    • mesoridazine (Serentil®)
    • pimozide (Orap®)
    • thioridazine (Mellaril®)
    • butorphanol (Stadol®)
    • codeine
    • hydrocodone (Loratab®, Vicodin®)
    • levorphanol (Levo-Dromoran®)
    • meperidine (Demerol®)
    • methadone (Dolophine®, Methadose®)
    • morphine (Kadian®, MS Contin®, Oramorph®)
    • naloxone (Narcan®)
    • oxycodone (OxyContin®)
    • propoxyphene (Darvon®, Darvocet®)
    • amitriptyline (Elavil®, Etrafon®)
    • amoxapine (Ascendin®)
    • citalopram (Celexa®)
    • clomipramine (Anafranil®)
    • desipramine (Norpramin®)
    • doxepin (Sinequan®)
    • escitalopram (Lexapro®)
    • fluoxetine (Prozac®, Sarafem®)
    • fluvoxamine (Luvox®)
    • imipramine (Janimine®, Tofranil®)
    • nortriptyline (Pamelor®)
    • paroxetine (Paxil®)
    • protriptyline (Vivactil®)
    • sertraline (Zoloft®)
    • trimipramine (Surmontil®)

    If you are using any of these drugs, you may not be able to use Lorazepam, or you may need dosage adjustments or special tests during treatment.

    There may be other drugs not listed that can affect Lorazepam. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

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