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Alprazolam (By mouth)

Alprazolam (al-PRA-zoe-lam)

Treats anxiety and panic disorder.

Brand Name(s):

Alprazolam Intensol, Gabazolamine, Gabazolamine-0.5, Niravam, Xanax, Xanax XR

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

This medicine is not right for everyone. Do not use this medicine if you had an allergic reaction to alprazolam or to similar medicines, are pregnant, or have narrow-angle glaucoma.

How to Use This Medicine:

Tablet, Liquid, Dissolving Tablet, Long Acting Tablet

  • Take your medicine as directed. Your dose may need to be changed several times to find what works best for you.
  • Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup.
  • Extended-release tablet: Swallow the extended-release tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • Disintegrating tablet: Dry your hands before you handle the tablet. Place the tablet on your tongue and let it dissolve.
  • Missed dose: Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Throw away any cotton that was in the bottle and reseal it tightly after each use.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Do not use this medicine if you are also using ketoconazole or itraconazole.
  • Some medicines and foods can affect how alprazolam works. Tell your doctor if you are using clarithromycin, cimetidine, cyclosporine, desipramine, diltiazem, ergotamine, erythromycin, fluconazole, fluoxetine, fluvoxamine, imipramine, nefazodone, nicardipine, nifedipine, sertraline, theophylline, birth control pills, or seizure medicine.
  • Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you are using this medicine.
  • Tell your doctor if you drink alcohol or if you are using any medicine that makes you sleepy, such as allergy medicine or narcotic pain medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • It is not safe to take this medicine during pregnancy. It could harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breastfeeding, or if you have glaucoma, lung problems, liver disease, kidney disease, or a history of drug or alcohol addiction, depression, mental illness, or seizures. Tell your doctor if you drink alcohol.
  • This medicine can be habit-forming. Do not use more than your prescribed dose. Call your doctor if you think your medicine is not working.
  • This drug has a higher risk of overdose. Call your doctor if you have extreme dizziness or weakness, a slow heartbeat, or problems with coordination or memory.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly. Your doctor will need to slowly decrease your dose before you stop it completely.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Blistering, peeling, red skin rash
  • Confusion, problems with coordination or memory
  • Extreme tiredness or weakness, slow heartbeat, trouble breathing or speaking
  • Seizure

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Change in appetite or weight
  • Constipation
  • Lightheadedness, drowsiness
  • Nervousness, restlessness
  • Loss of interest in sex

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088


Last Updated: 7/4/2014


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