Klonopin is a prescription medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1975. In cases of epilepsy, Klonopin may be prescribed in addition to the medications you are already taking if they are not effective in controlling your seizures. Klonopin is most often used to treat absence seizures, myoclonic seizures, and Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome. Klonopin is also known by its drug name, Clonazepam.
Klonopin should not be used by women who are pregnant or breastfeeding or people with narrow-angle glaucoma, serious liver problems, or hypersensitivity to benzodiazepines. Klonopin should be used with caution in people with chronic respiratory problems, impaired kidney or liver function, and suicidal tendencies.
Klonopin is a member of the benzodiazepine class of drugs. Benzodiazepines are used to treat seizures, anxiety, and muscle spasms, and as a premedication for anesthesia. It is believed that Klonopin works in cases of epilepsy by inhibiting nerve signals.
How do I take it?
Klonopin is taken orally as a traditional tablet or an orally disintegrating tablet one to three times each day. If you take the orally disintegrating tablet, make sure your hands are dry before peeling back the foil on the package. Do not try to push the disintegrating tablet through the foil.
Klonopin may be taken with or without food. Try to take Klonopin at the same times each day.
Avoid driving or operating machinery until you are certain you understand how Klonopin affects you.
Drinking alcohol while taking Klonopin can intensify some side effects.
Do not suddenly stop taking Klonopin. If you decide to stop taking Klonopin, consult your doctor for a plan to taper off your dose gradually.
Always follow your doctor’s instructions exactly when taking Klonopin.
Although Clonazepam (Klonopin) has been used for epilepsy since 1975, there have been few large clinical trials to test its effectiveness. Clonazepam is considered to be especially effective in combination with other medications against juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, progressive myoclonic epilepsy, and Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome.
Klonopin is habit-forming.
In people who have more than one type of seizure disorder, Klonopin can promote the incidence of tonic-clonic seizures.
Common side effects of Klonopin include sleepiness, dizziness, difficulty walking or balancing, increased urination, excess saliva, pain in muscles or joints, irritability, memory problems, blurry vision, hoarseness, and changes in sexual interest or ability. Some of these side effects may fade as your body adjusts to the medication.
Call your doctor if you experience depression, suicidal thoughts, hallucinations, unusual bruising or bleeding, yellowing of the skin or eyes, sores in the mouth or throat, or signs of infection such as fever or a persistent cough while taking Klonopin.
Many drugs can cause allergic reactions that, in the most serious cases, can result in death. Seek immediate medical help if you experience signs of a severe allergic reaction such as difficulty breathing or swelling in the face, throat, eyes, lips or tongue.