Clonazepam (Rivotril)

Other name: Rivotril

Clonazepam is widely used as a treatment for epilepsy. 

In multiple sclerosis, clonazepam is sometimes used to treat tremor. It is also occasionally used to manage pain or spasticity when other drugs have not been successful.

How do I take clonazepam?

Clonazepam is taken by mouth (orally) as tablets or a liquid solution.

Your doctor will usually start you on a low dose which is gradually increased over two to four weeks until the right dose has been found for you. Your doctor may advise you to split your daily dose into three or four equal amounts and take them at evenly spaced times throughout the day.

It’s possible to become dependent on clonazepam if you use the medicine for a long time. You should speak to your doctor before stopping treatment as if you stop the medication suddenly, or reduce the dose too quickly, you may experience withdrawal symptoms.

What side effects could I get with clonazepam?

Side effects include fatigue, muscle weakness, dizziness, lack of coordination (ataxia), light-headedness, drowsiness, confusion, and depression.

Clonazepam should not be taken if you have severe liver disorders or some respiratory conditions. It should also not be taken if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

Clonazepam can be dangerous if taken with alcohol. It can also increase the effect of a number of other drugs with which it should not be taken.  These include antihistamines, sedatives, tranquilisers, prescription pain medications, muscle relaxants, sleeping pills and drugs for seizures. If in doubt, talk to your doctor before taking clonazepam.

This medication may affect your ability to drive safely, particularly if it makes you feel dizzy or sleepy. It can also slow down your reactions. Do not drive if clonazepam affects you in this way.

How does clonazepam work?

Clonazepam belongs to a group of drugs called benzodiazepines. These slow down nerve messages in the central nervous system.

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