"What are benzodiazepines, and how do they work?
Benzodiazepines are a class of drugs primarily used for treating anxiety, but they also are effective in treating several other conditions. The exact mechanism of action of benzodiaz"...
A Klonopin (clonazepam) Medication Guide must be given to the patient each time Klonopin (clonazepam) is dispensed, as required by law. Patients should be instructed to take Klonopin (clonazepam) only as prescribed. Physicians are advised to discuss the following issues with patients for whom they prescribe Klonopin (clonazepam) :
To assure the safe and effective use of benzodiazepines, patients should be informed that, since benzodiazepines may produce psychological and physical dependence, it is advisable that they consult with their physician before either increasing the dose or abruptly discontinuing this drug.
Interference With Cognitive and Motor Performance
Because benzodiazepines have the potential to impair judgment, thinking or motor skills, patients should be cautioned about operating hazardous machinery, including automobiles, until they are reasonably certain that Klonopin (clonazepam) therapy does not affect them adversely.
Suicidal Thinking and Behavior
Patients, their caregivers, and families should be counseled that AEDs, including Klonopin (clonazepam) , may increase the risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior and should be advised of the need to be alert for the emergence or worsening of symptoms of depression, any unusual changes in mood or behavior, or the emergence of suicidal thoughts, behavior, or thoughts about self-harm. Behaviors of concern should be reported immediately to healthcare providers.
Patients should be advised to notify their physician if they become pregnant or intend to become pregnant during therapy with Klonopin (see WARNINGS: Pregnancy Risks). Patients should be encouraged to enroll in the North American Antiepileptic Drug (NAAED) Pregnancy Registry if they become pregnant. This registry is collecting information about the safety of antiepileptic drugs during pregnancy. To enroll, patients can call the toll free number 1-888-233-2334 (see PRECAUTIONS: Pregnancy).
Patients should be advised not to breastfeed an infant if they are taking Klonopin (clonazepam) .
Patients should be advised to inform their physicians if they are taking, or plan to take, any prescription or over-the-counter drugs, since there is a potential for interactions.
Patients should be advised to avoid alcohol while taking Klonopin (clonazepam) .
Last reviewed on RxList: 12/13/2010
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
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