Alprazolam - oral


Patient Medicine Information
Why do I need this medicine?
Alprazolam is used to treat anxiety. It is used for short-term relief of moderate or severe anxiety, or anxiety associated with depression.

This medicine may also be used to treat panic disorder with or without agoraphobia (fear of places and situations that might cause panic, helplessness, or embarrassment).
How do I take this medicine?
Take Alprazolam exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.

You may take this medicine with or without food. Try to take it at the same time each day.

Alprazolam is available as a conventional tablet, orally disintegrating (orodispersible) tablet, extended-release tablet, or oral solution.

If you are taking the conventional tablet, swallow it whole with a glass of water.

If you are taking the orodispersible tablet:
  1. Remove it from the container or foil only just before you take it. Do not leave the orodispersible tablet exposed to air. Do not push the orodispersible tablet through the foil as it is fragile and easily broken.
  2. Remove the orodispersible tablet with dry hands by peeling the backing off the foil and tipping the tablet onto your dry hands.
  3. Place the orodispersible tablet directly on your tongue as soon as it is taken out of the foil. The orodispersible tablet will immediately start to melt on the tongue. It can then be swallowed with or without water.
Do not cut, break or crush the orodispersible tablets.

If you are taking the extended-release type of tablet (usually labelled as "ER"), swallow it whole. Do not divide, chew or crush the tablet.

If you are taking the oral solution, shake the bottle well before taking it to ensure that the liquid is evenly mixed. Use the calibrated dropper provided to measure your dose. The oral solution may be mixed with approximately 30 mL of juice, water, or semi-solid foods (e.g. applesauce, pudding). The mixture should be taken immediately.

The dose of Alprazolam will be decided by your doctor. Your doctor will advise you on the treatment timeframe depending on your condition and response to this medication.

Do not stop taking Alprazolam suddenly as it may worsen your condition. Your doctor will gradually reduce the dose before stopping it completely. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.
What should I do if I have forgotten to take this medicine?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.

DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.

If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
When should I not use this medicine?
Alert your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • severe lung disease
  • myasthenia gravis (muscle weakness disorder)
  • sleep apnoea (a sleep disorder that causes interrupted breathing during sleep)
  • severe liver disease
  • acute narrow-angle glaucoma (increased pressure in the eye)
as Alprazolam may not be suitable for you.

Do not breastfeed while you are being treated with this medicine.

Do not take Alprazolam with medicines used to treat fungal infections such as ketoconazole and itraconazole.
What should I take note of while taking this medicine?
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
  • depression or suicidal thoughts
  • lung disease
  • history of drug abuse or alcoholism
  • mild to moderate liver disease
  • kidney disease
Let your doctor know if you are pregnant.

Be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving Alprazolam to the elderly or debilitated patient (physically or mentally weak, usually due to illness or old age). Elderly people and debilitated patients may be more sensitive to the side effects.

Why is it important to keep my appointments with the doctor?

Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly.
  • Your doctor may need to monitor the status of your heart and lung while you are being treated with this medicine.
  • Regular monitoring for signs of breathing disorder, drug misuse, abuse or addiction may also be needed.
What side effects could I experience?
Alprazolam may affect your ability to make decisions, think clearly, or react quickly. If affected, do not drive or take part in any activity in which you need to be alert.

Other side effects include any of the following: dry mouth, constipation, nausea, blurred vision, tiredness, weakness, headache, involuntary shaking of hands or legs, increased or decreased weight, loss of appetite, difficulty sleeping or excessive sleepiness, and skin irritation.

Some side effects may need immediate medical help. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience any of the following:
  • memory loss or problems
  • unusual changes in mood or behaviour (being too depressed, agitated, aggressive or having thoughts of self-harm)
  • hallucinations (seeing, hearing or feeling things that are not existent)
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Can I take this with other medicines?
Do not take Alprazolam with medicines used to treat fungal infections such as ketoconazole and itraconazole.

Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
  • strong painkillers e.g. propoxyphene
  • certain antibiotics e.g. erythromycin, clarithromycin
  • medicines to treat depression e.g. nefazodone, fluvoxamine, fluoxetine
  • medicines for epilepsy (fits or seizures) e.g. carbamazepine, phenytoin
  • medicines for cold or allergy e.g. diphenhydramine
  • diltiazem (medicine for high blood pressure)
  • ritonavir (medicine for HIV infection)
  • cimetidine (medicine to treat certain conditions that are caused by excessive acidity in your stomach)
  • medicines to block pain and sensation
  • digoxin (medicine for heart disease)
  • birth control pills
This list does not include all medicines that may interact with Alprazolam.

Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicines, supplements and medicines that you buy without a prescription.
What special dietary instructions should I follow?
Avoid alcohol. Alcohol intake may worsen the dizziness and drowsiness caused by Alprazolam.

Avoid excessive consumption of grapefruit or grapefruit juice (more than 1 litre a day).
How should I store this medicine?
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children. Protect from light and moisture.

Throw away any remaining oral solution 90 days after opening.

Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.
This information is independently developed by MIMS based on alprazolam - oral and is provided for your reference only. It is not a replacement for and should only be used in conjunction with full consultation with a licensed healthcare professional, the information provided by your pharmacist and/or the manufacturer of the medication. It may not contain all the available information you require and cannot substitute professional medical care, nor does it take into account all individual circumstances. Although great effort has been made to ensure content accuracy, we shall not be held responsible or liable for any claims or damages arising from the use or misuse of the information contained herein, its contents or omissions, or otherwise. Copyright © 2022 MIMS. All rights reserved. Powered by MIMS.com
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