Commonly used brand name(s):
In the U.S.
Available Dosage Forms:
Therapeutic Class: Antianxiety
Pharmacologic Class: Benzodiazepine, Long Acting
Diazepam is used to relieve symptoms of anxiety and alcohol withdrawal. diazepam may also be used to treat certain seizure disorders and help relax muscles or relieve muscle spasm.
Diazepam is a benzodiazepine. Benzodiazepines belong to the group of medicines called central nervous system (CNS) depressants, which are medicines that slow down the nervous system.
diazepam is available only with your doctor's prescription.
In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For diazepam, the following should be considered:
Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to diazepam or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.
Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of diazepam in infants below 6 months of age. Safety and efficacy have not been established.
Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of diazepam in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related kidney problems, which may require an adjustment in the dose for patients receiving diazepam.
|All Trimesters||D||Studies in pregnant women have demonstrated a risk to the fetus. However, the benefits of therapy in a life threatening situation or a serious disease, may outweigh the potential risk.|
Studies in women breastfeeding have demonstrated harmful infant effects. An alternative to this medication should be prescribed or you should stop breastfeeding while using diazepam.
Using diazepam with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Using diazepam with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.
Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.
Using diazepam with any of the following may cause an increased risk of certain side effects but may be unavoidable in some cases. If used together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use diazepam, or give you special instructions about the use of food, alcohol, or tobacco.
The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of diazepam. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:
Take diazepam only as directed by your doctor. Do not take more of it, do not take it more often, and do not take it for a longer time than your doctor ordered.
To use the oral solution:
The dose of diazepam will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of diazepam. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
If you miss a dose of diazepam, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.
Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.
Destroy any medicine that you do not need by flushing it down the toilet.
It is very important that your doctor check the progress of you or your child at regular visits to see if the medicine is working properly. Blood tests may be needed to check for any unwanted effects.
Using diazepam while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away.
diazepam may cause some people, especially older persons, to become drowsy, dizzy, lightheaded, clumsy, unsteady, or less alert than they are normally. Also, diazepam may cause double vision or other vision problems. Make sure you know how you react to diazepam before you drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert or able to think or see well.
diazepam will add to the effects of alcohol and other central nervous system (CNS) depressants. CNS depressants are medicines that slow down the nervous system, which may cause drowsiness or make you less alert. Some examples of CNS depressants are antihistamines or medicine for hay fever, allergies, or colds; sedatives, tranquilizers, or sleeping medicine; prescription pain medicine or narcotics; barbiturates (used for seizures); muscle relaxants; or anesthetics (numbing medicines), including some dental anesthetics. This effect may last for a few days after you or your child stop taking diazepam. Check with your doctor before taking any of the above while you or your child are using diazepam.
If you or your child develop any unusual or strange thoughts and behavior while taking diazepam, be sure to discuss it with your doctor. Some changes that have occurred in people taking diazepam are like those seen in people who drink too much alcohol. Other changes might be confusion, worsening of depression, hallucinations (seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there), suicidal thoughts, and unusual excitement, nervousness, or irritability.
Do not stop taking diazepam without checking with your doctor first. Your doctor may want you or your child to gradually reduce the amount you are using before stopping it completely. This may help prevent a worsening of your condition and reduce the possibility of withdrawal symptoms, such as convulsions (seizures), hallucinations, stomach or muscle cramps, tremors, or unusual behavior.
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:More common
Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:Symptoms of overdose
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:Incidence not known
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
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