chlordiazepoxide (generic name)

It is used to treat anxiety and alcohol withdrawal
(klor dye az e POX ide)
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What is this medicine?

CHLORDIAZEPOXIDE (klor dye az e POX ide) is a benzodiazepine. It is used to treat anxiety and alcohol withdrawal.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:
  • an alcohol or drug abuse problem
  • kidney or liver disease
  • suicidal thoughts
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to chlordiazepoxide, other benzodiazepines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

This medicine is for injection into a vein. It is usually given by a health care professional in a hospital or clinic setting.

If you get this medicine at home, you will be taught how to prepare and give this medicine. Use exactly as directed. Take your medicine at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. If you have been taking this medicine regularly for some time, do not suddenly stop taking it. You must gradually reduce the dose or you may get severe side effects. Ask your doctor or health care professional for advice. Even after you stop taking this medicine it can still affect your body for several days.

It is important that you put your used needles and syringes in a special sharps container. Do not put them in a trash can. If you do not have a sharps container, call your pharmacist or healthcare provider to get one.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

  • cimetidine
  • medicines for anxiety or sleeping problems, like alprazolam, lorazepam, or triazolam
  • medicines for depression, mental problems or psychiatric disturbances
  • medicines for HIV infection or AIDS
  • prescription pain medicines
  • rifampin, rifapentine, or rifabutin
  • some medicines for seizures like carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin, or primidone

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Your condition will be monitored carefully while you are receiving this medicine.

You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. To reduce the risk of dizzy and fainting spells, do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. Alcohol may increase dizziness and drowsiness. Avoid alcoholic drinks.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:
  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • confusion, depression
  • feeling faint or lightheaded, falls
  • mood changes, excitability or aggressive behavior
  • muscle cramps
  • problems with balance, talking, walking
  • restlessness
  • tremors
  • unusually weak or tired

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • change in sex drive or performance
  • constipation
  • drowsiness
  • menstrual changes
  • nausea, vomiting

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Last Updated: April 06, 2009
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