Clonazepam is the general form of the proprietary drug Klonopin, which is prescribed for the treatment of panic attacks. Clonazepam belongs to a class of drugs called benzodiazepines.
Clonazepam acts by increasing the effect of GABA, a neurotransmitter that slows the movement of nerve signals in the brain.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved clonazepam in 1975 under the Klonopin brand name for the pharmaceutical company Roche. Many companies now produce clonazepam.
Clonazepam is a controlled substance, because people can abuse drugs or become addicted to drugs.
Only in 2011, 76,557 visits were made to the emergency department as a result of the abuse of clonazepam, which is 122 percent more than in 2004.
Clonazepam may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and abnormal behavior.
Approximately one in 500 people taking medications, such as clonazepam, develops suicidal thoughts, usually within a week of starting treatment.
After you start clonazepam, it is important to tell your doctor if you have any thoughts about harming yourself or any unusual changes in mood or behavior, such as panic attacks, anxiety, agitation or depression.
Friends and family members should also be aware of any unusual changes in your behavior.
Studies have not shown whether clonazepam is safe and effective in the treatment of panic attacks in persons under 18 years of age. People over 65 years of age should also take clonazepam with caution.
Always tell your doctor if you are allergic to any medications, including other benzodiazepines. Common brand names for benzodiazepines include: Valium, Xanax, Librium, Dalmane and Ativan. Clonazepam may interact with many medications, so make sure your doctor knows about all the medicines that you take.
You should not take clonazepam if you have open-angle glaucoma, so tell your doctor about any eye disease.
You also may not take clonazepam if you have severe liver disease.
Other conditions that your doctor needs to know before prescribing clonazepam include:
- Lung disease
- Difficulty swallowing
- Kidney disease
- Alcohol or drug abuse
After you have been on clonazepam for a significant period of time, there is a chance that you will become addicted to this drug. If this occurs, it is dangerous to stop suddenly taking clonazepam. Stopping suddenly can cause withdrawal symptoms and seizures. Symptoms of withdrawal may include hallucinations, shaking, seizures, anxiety, sweating, and difficulty sleeping.
Pregnancy and Clonazepam
Clonazepam is dangerous during pregnancy. There is evidence that clonazepam may increase the risk of birth defects if you take them during pregnancy.
Before taking clonazepam, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or can become pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking clonazepam, immediately tell your doctor.
Clonazepam is also not a safe drug for breastfeeding. Talk with your doctor about other options if you plan on breastfeeding while taking clonazepam.
Side effects of clonazepam
Clonazepam has many side effects. The most common among them are drowsiness, ataxia (type of awkwardness) and behavioral changes. Tell your doctor about any side effects.
Other side effects of clonazepam:
- Increased salivation
- Muscle pain
- Frequent urination
- Blurred vision
- Loss of interest in sex
- Memory loss
- Difficulty breathing or infection
- Decreased appetite
Serious side effects can occur. If you have any of these side effects, call your doctor immediately or call 911:
- Severe rash or hives
- Unpleasant breathing
- Swelling of the face, lips or tongue
- Thoracic pain
- Depression worsening
- Thoughts of suicide
Many drugs can affect the work of clonazepam, and clonazepam may affect other medicines that you take. It is very important that your doctor knows about all the medicines you take, including illegal drugs, over-the-counter (over-the-counter) medicines and any herbs or supplements.
Clonazepam can interact with many other drugs that act in your brain and nervous system.
- Drugs for the treatment of depression, including monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), tricyclic antidepressants and some selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as fluvoxamine (Luvox)
- Other drugs used to treat seizures, including carbamazepine (Tegretol), phenobarbital (Luminal, Solfoton) and phenytoin (Dilantin)
- Drugs used to treat mental illnesses, including phenothiazines, thioxanthene and butyrophenones
- Muscle relaxants
- Anti-anxiety drugs
- Drugs used to treat fungal infections, including itraconazole (sporanok) and ketoconazole (Nizoral)
- Narcotic pain medication
- Some antibiotics, such as clarithromycin (Biaxin, Prevpac) and erythromycin (erythrocin, E-mycin)
- Uneven bipolar drug amiodarone (Cordarone, Pacerone)
- Calcium channel blockers, such as diltiazem (Cardizem, Dilacor, Tiazac) and verapamil (Calan, Isoptin, Verelan)
- HIV / AIDS, including indinavir (Crixivan), nelfinavir (Viracept), and ritonavir (Norvir, Kaletra)
- The drug cimetidine (Tagamet)
- St. John’s Wort
Other interactions Clonosepam
Clonazepam can make you feel drowsy and can affect your attention.
Until you know how clonazepam affects you, do not drive or drive it.
Clonazepam and alcohol
Do not drink alcohol while taking clonazepam.
Alcohol may increase the risk of some side effects of clonazepam.
Dosage of clonazepam
Clonazepam comes in regular and soluble tablets. Thoroughly remove the tablets from the foil package. Make sure your hands are dry, and do not push the tablets through the foil. Immediately place these pills on your tongue.
Your dose of clonazepam will depend on your condition and your response to the drug.
Your doctor will start with a low dose and increase the dose until you have a good answer. This may take several weeks.
Clonazepam falls on tablets of 0.5, 1 and 2 milligrams (mg).
A typical adult dose for the treatment of seizures can begin with 1.5 mg per day, divided into three doses. Your doctor can gradually increase the dose to a maximum daily dose of 20 mg.
The dosage of the baby for the treatment of seizures depends on the weight.
A typical adult dose for the treatment of panic disorder can begin with 0.25 mg twice daily. After three days, your doctor can increase the dose to 1 mg per day.
Most likely, you will take clonazepam once or three times a day at about the same time. You can take it with you or without food.
Overdose of clonazepam
An overdose of clonazepam can cause drowsiness, confusion, reduced reflexes and to whom.
If an overdose occurs, call the poison control center or an emergency.
Missed dose of clonazepam
You should only take clonazepam exactly as directed by your doctor.
Taking more clonazepam than prescribed by your doctor may increase the risk of dependence.
Do not stop taking clonazepam on your own, because it can cause withdrawal symptoms.
If you miss a dose of clonazepam, take the missed dose as soon as you remember.
If it is almost time for your next regular dose, then skip the missed dose.
Do not double your dose to make up for the missed one.