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Klonopin (Clonazepam)
What are the Uses?

Clonazepam, or Klonopin, is a medication that is used to treat: Anxiety, Panic Disorders and Seizures (absence, akinetic, and myoclonic)

When Will My Medication Start to Work?

Klonopin should start working immediately, but this medication usually needs to be taken for two to three weeks to see if it helps reduce the frequency or severity of the seizures.

Any Other Important Information?

If you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or breastfeeding, discuss the potential risks of this or any medication with your doctor. Do not stop taking this drug abruptly, this could cause psychological and physical withdrawal symptoms. Do not take this drug if you have significant liver disease, are sensitive to benzodiazepines, or have acute angle-closure glaucoma.

What are the Side Effects?

Remember that only some people will experience side effects and that no one experiences side effects in exactly the same way. If you experience any side effects, contact your doctor or clinician right away and continue taking your medication. The following list may not contain all of the side effects associated with this medication.

Most common side effects:

Drowsiness, ataxia(shaky movements and unsteady gait), behavioral disturbances

Infrequent side effects:

Tremor, confusion, abnormal eye movements, constipation, nausea, diarrhea, rash

Risks

Thrombocytopenia(a reducation in the number of platlets in the blood which can cause bleeding into the skin, spontaneous bruisin, and prolonged bleeding after an injury), respiratory depression

Are there any Drug Interactions?

Remember, always follow your physician's recommendations on how to take your medication. Even if you are taking one of the following substances, continue taking your medication as prescribed and consult your physician. Also, if you are taking any herbal remedies, vitamins, and/or over-the-counter medications, be sure to tell your physician. The following section offers some, but not necessarily all, of the possible drug interactions.

Do not take with MAO Inhibitors due to possible low blood pressure and worsening of sedation and respiratory depression. Cordarone (amiodarone), Norvir (ritonavir), and other protease inhibitors may cause drug toxicity. Tegretol (carbamazepine), tricyclic antidepressants, Dilantin (phenytoin), and Theo-Dur (theophylline) may decrease the effects of Klonopin. Tagamet (cimetidine), Antabuse (disulfiram), macrolide antibiotics (i.e. erythromycin), Prilosec (omeprazole), and oral contraceptives may increase the effects of Klonopin. Use alcohol with extreme caution.
Alcohol may increase the depressant effects of this drug on the brain.

Benzodiazepines (and my personal story)