What is this medication?
LORAZEPAM (lor A ze pam) treats anxiety. It works by helping your nervous system slow down. It belongs to a group of medications called benzodiazepines.
This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Ativan
What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?
They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
- History of drug or alcohol abuse problem
- Kidney disease
- Liver disease
- Lung or breathing disease, like asthma
- Mental illness
- Myasthenia gravis
- Parkinson disease
- Suicidal thoughts, plans, or attempt; a previous suicide attempt by you or a family member
- An unusual or allergic reaction to lorazepam, other medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
- Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
How should I use this medication?
Take this medication by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take your medication at regular intervals. Do not take it more often than directed. Do not stop taking except on your care team's advice.
A special MedGuide will be given to you by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.
Talk to your care team regarding the use of this medication in children. While this medication may be used in children as young as 12 years for selected conditions, precautions do apply.
Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.
NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.
What if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.
What may interact with this medication?
Do not take this medication with any of the following:
- Narcotic medications for cough
- Sodium oxybate
This medication may also interact with the following:
- Antihistamines for allergy, cough and cold
- Certain medications for anxiety or sleep
- Certain medications for depression, like amitriptyline, fluoxetine, sertraline
- Certain medications for seizures like carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, primidone
- General anesthetics like lidocaine, pramoxine, tetracaine
- MAOIs like Carbex, Eldepryl, Marplan, Nardil, and Parnate
- Medications that relax muscles for surgery
- Narcotic medications for pain
- Phenothiazines like chlorpromazine, mesoridazine, prochlorperazine, thioridazine
This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.
What should I watch for while using this medication?
Tell your care team if your symptoms do not start to get better or if they get worse.
Do not stop taking except on your care team's advice. You may develop a severe reaction. Your care team will tell you how much medication to take.
You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medication affects you. To reduce the risk of dizzy and fainting spells, do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. Alcohol may increase dizziness and drowsiness. Avoid alcoholic drinks.
If you are taking another medication that also causes drowsiness, you may have more side effects. Give your care team a list of all medications you use. Your care team will tell you how much medication to take. Do not take more medication than directed. Call emergency service for help if you have problems breathing or unusual sleepiness.
What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?
Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:
- Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
- CNS depression—slow or shallow breathing, shortness of breath, feeling faint, dizziness, confusion, difficulty staying awake
- Thoughts of suicide or self-harm, worsening mood, feelings of depression
Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):
This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Where should I keep my medication?
Keep out of the reach of children. This medication can be abused. Keep your medication in a safe place to protect it from theft. Do not share this medication with anyone. Selling or giving away this medication is dangerous and against the law.
Store at room temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F). Protect from light. Keep container tightly closed.
This medication may cause accidental overdose and death if taken by other adults, children, or pets. Mix any unused medication with a substance like cat litter or coffee grounds. Then throw the medication away in a sealed container like a sealed bag or a coffee can with a lid. Do not use the medication after the expiration date.
NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.
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