- Tips to Fast Stress Relief
- Take the Panic Attacks Quiz!
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) Slideshow
- What is Ativan (lorazepam)?
- What brand names are available for lorazepam?
- Is Ativan (lorazepam) available as a generic drug?
- Do I need a prescription for Ativan (lorazepam)?
- Why is Ativan (lorazepam) prescribed to patients?
- What are the side effects of Ativan (lorazepam)?
- What is the dosage for Ativan (lorazepam)?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with Ativan (lorazepam)?
- Is Ativan (lorazepam) safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about Ativan (lorazepam)?
What is Ativan (lorazepam)?
What brand names are available for lorazepam?
- Ativan is the brand name available for lorazepam.
- Loraz brand name for lorazepam has been discontinued in the US.
Why is Ativan (lorazepam) prescribed to patients?
- Ativan (lorazepam) is used for the management of anxiety disorders, the short-term relief of symptoms of anxiety or anxiety associated with depression.
- Ativan is effective for insomnia and panic attacks, and is used in combination with other medications to prevent nausea and vomiting resulting from chemotherapy.
- Ativan also is administered before anesthesia for sedation and used for prevention and treatment of alcohol withdrawal.
- It also is used for treating seizures (status epilepticus).
What are the side effects of Ativan (lorazepam)?
The most common side effects associated with Ativan are:
Other side effects include:
Possible serious side effects include:
- Extrapyramidal symptoms
- Respiratory depression
- Suicidal ideation/attempt
- Like all benzodiazepines, Ativan can cause physical dependence. Suddenly stopping therapy after a few months of daily therapy may be associated with a feeling of loss of self-worth, agitation, and insomnia. If Ativan is taken continuously for longer than a few months, stopping therapy suddenly may produce seizures, tremors, muscle cramping, vomiting, and sweating.
What is the dosage for Ativan (lorazepam)?
- The dose of Ativan is tailored to the patient's needs.
- The usual dose for treating anxiety is 2-6 mg orally every 8 to 12 hours as needed.
- Insomnia is treated with 2-4 mg given at bedtime.
Which drugs or supplements interact with Ativan (lorazepam)?
- Ativan and all benzodiazepines accentuate the effects of other drugs that slow the brain's processes such as alcohol, barbiturates, narcotics, and tranquilizers, and the combination of Ativan and these drugs may lead to excessive sedation. There have been cases of marked sedation when Ativan was given to patients taking the tranquilizer loxapine (Loxitane); it is unclear if there is a drug interaction, but caution should be used if Ativan and loxapine are used together.
Is Ativan (lorazepam) safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
- Ativan and other benzodiazepines have been associated with fetal damage, including congenital malformations, when taken by pregnant women in their first trimester. Ativan is best avoided if at all possible in the first trimester and probably throughout pregnancy.
- Ativan is excreted in human milk and should be avoided during pregnancy.
What else should I know about Ativan (lorazepam)?
What preparations of Ativan (lorazepam) are available?
- Tablets: 0.5, 1, and 2 mg.
- Oral solution: 0.5 mg/5 ml, 2 mg/ml.
- Injection: 1 mg/0.5 ml, 2 mg/ml and 4 mg/ml
How should I keep Ativan (lorazepam) stored?
- Tablets should be kept at room temperature 15 C to 30 C (59 F to 86 F).
- Oral solutions should be refrigerated at 2 C to 8 C (36 F to 46 F).
- Injectable solutions should be refrigerated.
How does Ativan (lorazepam) work?
- Lorazepam is thought that excessive activity of nerves in the brain may cause anxiety and other psychological disorders. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a neurotransmitter, a chemical that nerves in the brain use to send messages to one another that reduces the activity of nerves in the brain. It is thought that lorazepam and other benzodiazepines may act by enhancing the effects of GABA in the brain to reduce activity. Because lorazepam is removed from the blood more rapidly than many other benzodiazepines, there is less chance that lorazepam concentrations in blood will reach high levels and become toxic. Lorazepam also has fewer interactions with other medications than most of the other benzodiazepines.
When was Ativan (lorazepam) approved by the FDA?
- The FDA approved lorazepam in March 1999.
Ativan (lorazepam) is a prescription drug used for the management of anxiety disorders, short-term relief of anxiety, or anxiety associated with depression. Ativan is effective for insomnia, panic attacks, and is used for prevention and treatment of alcohol withdrawal. Side effects include:
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- Depression FAQs
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Medications & Supplements
- diazepam (Valium, Diastat, Acudial, Diastat Pediatric, Diazepam Intensol)
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You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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