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Klonopin, a benzodiazepine, is available as scored tablets with a K-shaped perforation containing 0.5 mg of clonazepam and unscored tablets with a K-shaped perforation containing 1 mg or 2 mg of clonazepam. Each tablet also contains lactose, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose and corn starch, with the following colorants: 0.5 mg—FD&C Yellow No. 6 Lake; 1 mg—FD&C Blue No. 1 Lake and FD&C Blue No. 2 Lake. Klonopin is also available as an orally disintegrating tablet containing 0.125 mg, 0.25 mg, 0.5 mg, 1 mg or 2 mg clonazepam. Each orally disintegrating tablet also contains gelatin, mannitol, methylparaben sodium, propylparaben sodium and xanthan gum. Chemically, clonazepam is 5-(2-chlorophenyl)-1,3-dihydro-7-nitro-2H-1,4- benzodiazepin-2-one. It is a light yellow crystalline powder. It has a molecular weight of 315.72 and the following structural formula.
Klonopin is useful alone or as an adjunct in the treatment of the Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (petit mal variant), akinetic, and myoclonic seizures. In patients with absence seizures (petit mal) who have failed to respond to succinimides, Klonopin may be useful.
Some loss of effect may occur during the course of clonazepam treatment Effect).
Klonopin is indicated for the treatment of panic disorder, with or without agoraphobia, as defined in DSM-V. Panic disorder is characterized by the occurrence of unexpected panic attacks and associated concern about having additional attacks, worry about the implications or consequences of the attacks, and/or a significant change in behavior related to the attacks.
The efficacy of Klonopin was established in two 6- to 9-week trials in panic disorder patients whose diagnoses corresponded to the DSM-IIIR category of panic disorder (see Clinical Trials).
Panic disorder (DSM-V) is characterized by recurrent unexpected panic attacks, i.e., a discrete period of intense fear or discomfort in which four (or more) of the following symptoms develop abruptly and reach a peak within 10 minutes:
(1) Palpitations, pounding heart or accelerated heart rate;
(3) Trembling or shaking;
(4) Sensations of shortness of breath or smothering;
(5) Feeling of choking;
(6) Chest pain or discomfort;
(7) Nausea or abdominal distress;
(8) Feeling dizzy, unsteady, lightheaded or faint;
(9) derealization (feelings of unreality) or depersonalization (being detached from oneself);
(10) fear of losing control;
(11) fear of dying;
(12) paresthesias (numbness or tingling sensations);
(13) chills or hot flushes.
The effectiveness of Klonopin in long-term use, that is, for more than 9 weeks, has not been systematically studied in controlled clinical trials. The physician who elects to use Klonopin for extended periods should periodically reevaluate the long-term usefulness of the drug for the individual patient
DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION
Clonazepam is available as a tablet. The tablets should be administered with water by swallowing the tablet whole.
The use of multiple anticonvulsants may result in an increase of CNS depressant adverse effects. This should be considered before adding Klonopin to an existing anticonvulsant regimen.
The initial dose for adults with seizure disorders should not exceed 1.5 mg/day divided into three doses. Dosage may be increased in increments of 0.5 to 1 mg every 3 days until seizures are adequately controlled or until side effects preclude any further increase. Maintenance dosage must be individualized for each patient depending upon response. Maximum recommended daily dose is 20 mg.
Klonopin is administered orally. In order to minimize drowsiness, the initial dose for infants and children (up to 10 years of age or 30 kg of body weight) should be between 0.01 and 0.03 mg/kg/day but not to exceed 0.05 mg/kg/day given in two or three divided doses. Dosage should be increased by no more than 0.25 to 0.5 mg every third day until a daily maintenance dose of 0.1 to 0.2 mg/kg of body weight has been reached, unless seizures are controlled or side effects preclude further increase. Whenever possible, the daily dose should be divided into three equal doses. If doses are not equally divided, the largest dose should be given before retiring.
There is no clinical trial experience with Klonopin in seizure disorder patients 65 years of age and older. In general, elderly patients should be started on low doses of Klonopin and observed closely.
The initial dose for adults with panic disorder is 0.25 mg bid. An increase to the target dose for most patients of 1 mg/day may be made after 3 days. The recommended dose of 1 mg/day is based on the results from a fixed dose study in which the optimal effect was seen at 1 mg/day. Higher doses of 2, 3 and 4 mg/day in that study were less effective than the 1 mg/day dose and were associated with more adverse effects.
Nevertheless, it is possible that some individual patients may benefit from doses of up to a maximum dose of 4 mg/day, and in those instances, the dose may be increased in increments of 0.125 to 0.25 mg bid every 3 days until panic disorder is controlled or until side effects make further increases undesired. To reduce the inconvenience of somnolence, administration of one dose at bedtime may be desirable.
Treatment should be discontinued gradually, with a decrease of 0.125 mg bid every 3 days, until the drug is completely withdrawn.
There is no body of evidence available to answer the question of how long the patient treated with clonazepam should remain on it. Therefore, the physician who elects to use Klonopin for extended periods should periodically reevaluate the long-term usefulness of the drug for the individual patient.
There is no clinical trial experience with Klonopin in panic disorder patients under 18 years of age.
There is no clinical trial experience with Klonopin in panic disorder patients 65 years of age and older. In general, elderly patients should be started on low doses of Klonopin and observed closely.
Effect Of Concomitant Use Of Benzodiazepines And Opioids
The concomitant use of benzodiazepines and opioids increases the risk of respiratory depression because of actions at different receptor sites in the CNS that control respiration. Benzodiazepines interact at GABAA sites, and opioids interact primarily at mu receptors. When benzodiazepines and opioids are combined, the potential for benzodiazepines to significantly worsen opioid-related respiratory depression exists. Limit dosage and duration of concomitant use of benzodiazepines and opioids, and follow patients closely for respiratory depression and sedation.
Effect Of Clonazepam On The Pharmacokinetics Of Other Drugs
Clonazepam does not appear to alter the pharmacokinetics of carbamazepine or phenobarbital. Clonazepam has the potential to influence concentrations of phenytoin. Monitoring of phenytoin concentration is recommended when clonazepam is co-administrated with phenytoin. The effect of clonazepam on the metabolism of other drugs has not been investigated.
Effect Of Other Drugs On The Pharmacokinetics Of Clonazepam
Literature reports suggest that ranitidine, an agent that decreases stomach acidity, does not greatly alter clonazepam pharmacokinetics.
In a study in which the 2 mg clonazepam orally disintegrating tablet was administered with and without propantheline (an anticholinergic agent with multiple effects on the GI tract) to healthy volunteers, the AUC of clonazepam was 10% lower and the Cmax of clonazepam was 20% lower when the orally disintegrating tablet was given with propantheline compared to when it was given alone.
The selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors sertraline (weak CYP3A4 inducer) and fluoxetine (CYP2D6 inhibitor), and the anti-epileptic drug felbamate (CYP2C19 inhibitor and CYP3A4 inducer) do not affect the pharmacokinetics of clonazepam. Cytochrome P- 450 inducers, such as phenytoin, carbamazepine, lamotrigine, and phenobarbital induce clonazepam metabolism, causing an approximately 38% decrease in plasma clonazepam levels.
Although clinical studies have not been performed, based on the involvement of the cytochrome P-450 3A family in clonazepam metabolism, inhibitors of this enzyme system, notably oral antifungal agents (e.g., fluconazole), should be used cautiously in patients receiving clonazepam because they may impair the metabolism of clonazepam leading to exaggerated concentrations and effects.
The CNS-depressant action of the benzodiazepine class of drugs may be potentiated by alcohol, narcotics, barbiturates, nonbarbiturate hypnotics, antianxiety agents, the phenothiazines, thioxanthene and butyrophenone classes of antipsychotic agents, monoamine oxidase inhibitors and the tricyclic antidepressants, and by other anticonvulsant drugs.Drug Abuse And Dependence Controlled Substance Class
Clonazepam is a Schedule IV controlled substance.
Physical And Psychological Dependence
Withdrawal symptoms, similar in character to those noted with barbiturates and alcohol (e.g., convulsions, psychosis, hallucinations, behavioral disorder, mood changes, tremor, abdominal and muscle cramps) have occurred following abrupt discontinuance of clonazepam. The more severe withdrawal symptoms have usually been limited to those patients who received excessive doses over an extended period of time.
Generally milder withdrawal symptoms (e.g., dysphoria and insomnia) have been reported following abrupt discontinuance of benzodiazepines taken continuously at therapeutic levels for several months. Consequently, after extended therapy, abrupt discontinuation should generally be avoided and a gradual dosage tapering schedule followed Addiction-prone individuals (such as drug addicts or alcoholics) should be under careful surveillance when receiving clonazepam or other psychotropic agents because of the predisposition of such patients to habituation and dependence.
Following the short-term treatment of patients with panic disorder in Studies 1 and 2 (see Clinical Trials), patients were gradually withdrawn during a 7-week downward-titration (discontinuance) period. Overall, the discontinuance period was associated with good tolerability and a very modest clinical deterioration, without evidence of a significant rebound phenomenon. However, there are not sufficient data from adequate and well-controlled long-term clonazepam studies in patients with panic disorder to accurately estimate the risks of withdrawal symptoms and dependence that may be associated with such use.
When used in patients in whom several different types of seizure disorders coexist, Klonopin may increase the incidence or precipitate the onset of generalized tonic-clonic seizures (grand mal). This may require the addition of appropriate anticonvulsants or an increase in their dosages. The concomitant use of valproic acid and Klonopin may produce absence status.
In some studies, up to 30% of patients who initially responded have shown a loss of anticonvulsant activity, often within 3 months of administration. In some cases, dosage adjustment may reestablish efficacy.
Laboratory Testing During Long-Term Therapy
Periodic blood counts and liver function tests are advisable during long-term therapy with Klonopin.
Psychiatric And Paradoxical Reactions
Paradoxical reactions, such as agitation, irritability, aggression, anxiety, anger, nightmares, hallucinations, and psychoses are known to occur when using benzodiazepines (Risks Of Abrupt Withdrawal and Drug Abuse And Dependence: Physical And Psychological Dependence). Paradoxical reactions are more likely to occur in children and in the elderly.
Risks Of Abrupt Withdrawal
The abrupt withdrawal of Klonopin, particularly in those patients on long-term, high-dose therapy, may precipitate status epilepticus. Therefore, when discontinuing Klonopin, gradual withdrawal is essential. While Klonopin is being gradually withdrawn, the simultaneous substitution of another anticonvulsant may be indicated.
Caution In Renally Impaired Patients
Metabolites of Klonopin are excreted by the kidneys; to avoid their excess accumulation, caution should be exercised in the administration of the drug to patients with impaired renal function.
Klonopin may produce an increase in salivation. This should be considered before giving the drug to patients who have difficulty handling secretions.
Klonopin may cause respiratory depression and should be used with caution in patients with compromised respiratory function (e.g., chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, sleep apnea).
Klonopin may have a porphyrogenic effect and should be used with care in patients with porphyria.
Information For Patients
A Klonopin Medication Guide must be given to the patient each time Klonopin is dispensed, as required by law. Patients should be instructed to take Klonopin only as prescribed. Physicians are advised to discuss the following issues with patients for whom they prescribe Klonopin:
Risks From Concomitant Use With Opioids
Inform patients and caregivers that potentially fatal additive effects may occur if Klonopin is used with opioids and not to use such drugs concomitantly unless supervised by a health care provider
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 therapy does not affect them adversely.
Suicidal Thinking And Behavior
Patients, their caregivers, and families should be counseled that AEDs, including Klonopin, 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 .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 should be advised to notify their physician if they are breastfeeding or intend to breastfeed during therapy.
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.
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment Of Fertility
Carcinogenicity studies have not been conducted with clonazepam.
The data currently available are not sufficient to determine the genotoxic potential of clonazepam.
Impairment Of Fertility
In a two-generation fertility study in which clonazepam was given orally to rats at 10 and 100 mg/kg/day, there was a decrease in the number of pregnancies and in the number of offspring surviving until weaning. The lowest dose tested is approximately 5 and 24 times the maximum recommended human dose (MRHD) of 20 mg/day for seizure disorders and 4 mg/day for panic disorder, respectively, on a body surface area (mg/m2) basis.
There are no adequate and well-controlled studies of Klonopin in pregnant women. Available human data on the risk of teratogenicity are inconclusive. There is insufficient evidence in humans to assess the effect of benzodiazepine exposure during pregnancy on neurodevelopment. Administration of benzodiazepines immediately prior to or during childbirth can result in a syndrome of hypothermia, hypotonia, respiratory depression, and difficulty feeding. In addition, infants born to mothers who have taken benzodiazepines during the later stages of pregnancy can develop dependence, and subsequently withdrawal, during the postnatal period.
In three studies in which clonazepam was administered orally to pregnant rabbits at doses of 0.2, 1, 5, or 10 mg/kg/day during the period of organogenesis, a similar pattern of malformations (cleft palate, open eyelid, fused sternebrae and limb defects) was observed at all doses, in a low, non-dose-related incidence. The lowest dose tested is less than the maximum recommended human dose (MRHD) of 20 mg/day for seizure disorders and similar to the MRHD of 4 mg/day for panic disorder, on a mg/m2 basis. Reductions in maternal weight gain occurred at doses of 5 mg/kg/day or greater and reduction in embryofetal growth occurred in one study at a dose of 10 mg/kg/day.
No adverse maternal or embryofetal effects were observed in mice or rats following oral administration of clonazepam during organogenesis of doses up to 15 or 40 mg/kg/day, respectively (4 and 20 times the MRHD of 20 mg/day for seizure disorders and 20 and 100 times the MRHD of 4 mg/day for panic disorder, respectively, on a mg/m2 basis).
Data for other benzodiazepines suggest the possibility of adverse developmental effects (long-term effects on neurobehavioral and immunological function) in animals following prenatal exposure to benzodiazepines.
To provide information regarding the effects of in utero exposure to Klonopin, physicians are advised to recommend that pregnant patients taking Klonopin enroll in the NAAED Pregnancy Registry. This. Information on this registry can also be found at the website
Symptoms of clonazepam overdosage, like those produced by other CNS depressants, include somnolence, confusion, coma, and diminished reflexes.
Treatment includes monitoring of respiration, pulse and blood pressure, general supportive measures and immediate gastric lavage. Intravenous fluids should be administered and an adequate airway maintained. Hypotension may be combated by the use of levarterenol or metaraminol. Dialysis is of no known value. Flumazenil, a specific benzodiazepine–receptor antagonist, is indicated for the complete or partial reversal of the sedative effects of benzodiazepines and may be used in situations when an overdose with a benzodiazepine is known or suspected.
Prior to the administration of flumazenil, necessary measures should be instituted to secure airway, ventilation and intravenous access. Flumazenil is intended as an adjunct to, not as a substitute for, proper management of benzodiazepine overdose. Patients treated with flumazenil should be monitored for resedation, respiratory depression and other residual benzodiazepine effects for an appropriate period after treatment.
The prescriber should be aware of a risk of seizure in association with flumazenil treatment, particularly in long-term benzodiazepine users and in cyclic antidepressant overdose.
Flumazenil is not indicated in patients with epilepsy who have been treated with benzodiazepines. Antagonism of the benzodiazepine effect in such patients may provoke seizures.
Serious sequelae are rare unless other drugs or alcohol have been taken concomitantly.
Risks From Concomitant Use With Opioids
Concomitant use of benzodiazepines, including Klonopin, and opioids may result in profound sedation, respiratory depression, coma, and death. Because of these risks, reserve concomitant prescribing of benzodiazepines and opioids for use in patients for whom alternative treatment options are inadequate.
Observational studies have demonstrated that concomitant use of opioid analgesics and benzodiazepines increases the risk of drug-related mortality compared to use of opioids alone. If a decision is made to prescribe Klonopin concomitantly with opioids, prescribe the lowest effective dosages and minimum durations of concomitant use, and follow patients closely for signs and symptoms of respiratory depression and sedation. Advise both patients and caregivers about the risks of respiratory depression and sedation when Klonopin is used with opioids Interference With Cognitive And Motor Performance
Since Klonopin produces CNS depression, patients receiving this drug should be cautioned against engaging in hazardous occupations requiring mental alertness, such as operating machinery or driving a motor vehicle. They should also be warned about the concomitant use of alcohol or other CNS-depressant drugs during Klonopin therapy
Suicidal Behavior And Ideation
Antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), including Klonopin, increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior in patients taking these drugs for any indication. Patients treated with any AED for any indication should be monitored for the emergence or worsening of depression, suicidal thoughts or behavior, and/or any unusual changes in mood or behavior.
Common side effects of Klonopin include: drowsiness. Other side effects include: upper respiratory tract infection, ataxia, depression, and dizziness. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.
For the Consumer
Applies to clonazepam: oral solution, oral tablet, oral tablet disintegrating
Along with its needed effects, clonazepam (the active ingredient contained in Klonopinin ) 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 while taking clonazepam:
Body aches or pain
- difficulty breathing
- feeling sad or empty
- lack of appetite
- loss of interest or pleasure
loss of voice
shakiness and unsteady walk
- runny nose
- sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
- sore throat
- trouble concentrating
- trouble sleeping
- unsteadiness, trembling, or other problems with muscle control or coordination
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- bladder pain
- bloody or cloudy urine
change in speech
difficult, burning, or painful urination
- frequent urge to urinate
- general feeling of discomfort or illness
- joint pain
- loss of appetite
- lower back or side pain
- mood or mental changes
muscle aches and pains
Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information. However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this list includes all possible dosages and list of side effects as well as information on the drug. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always speak with your doctor or pharmacist about dosages that are right for you.
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