Lorazepam is a medication used to treat anxiety. It is found in the benzodiazepine family, the same family that includes diazepam (Valium), alprazolam (Xanax), clonazepam (Klonopin), flurazepam (Dalmane) and others. It is believed that the excessive activity of the nerves of the brain can cause anxiety and other psychological disorders. Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is a neurotransmitter, a chemical element used by the nerves of the brain to send messages to each other. GABA reduces the activity of the nerves of the brain. Lorazepam and other benzodiazepines can act by improving the effects of GABA in the brain. Because lorazepam disappears from the blood more quickly than many other benzodiazepines, there is less chance that the concentrations of lorazepam in the blood reach high levels and is toxic. Lorazepam also has lower interactions with other medications than most other benzodiazepines. The FDA approved lorazepam in March 1999.
The dose of lorazepam is calculated tailored to the needs of each patient. The normal dose to treat anxiety is 2-3 mg / day divided into two or three doses. Insomnia is treated with 2-4 mg at bedtime.
The most common side effects associated with lorazepam are sedation (15.9% of patients), dizziness (6.9% of patients), weakness and instability. Other side effects include a feeling of depression, loss of orientation, headache and sleeping discomfort. Like all benzodiazepines, lorazepam can cause physical dependence. Stopping therapy suddenly after a few months of daily therapy may be associated with a sense of loss of self-esteem, agitation and insomnia. If lorazepam is taken continuously for more than a few months, stopping therapy suddenly can lead to seizures, tremors, muscle cramps, vomiting and sweating.
The tablets should be stored at room temperature 15-30 ° C (59-86 ° F). Oral solutions should be refrigerated at 2-8 ° C (36-46 ° F). Injectable solutions should be refrigerated.
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