Alprazolam

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alprazolam (al-PRAY-zoh-lam) is a drug used to treat anxiety disorders and panic attacks. It is being studied in the treatment of nausea and vomiting caused by some cancer treatments. It is a type of benzodiazepine. Also called Xanax.

Mechanism of action of Alprazolam

A triazolobenzodiazepine agent with anxiolytic, sedative-hypnotic and anticonvulsant activities. Alprazolam binds to a specific site distinct from the inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) binding site on the benzodiazepine-GABA-A-chloride ionophore receptor complex located in the limbic, thalamic and hypothalamic regions of the central nervous system (CNS). This binding causes an allosteric modification of the receptor and enhances the affinity of GABA to the receptor leading to an increase in the frequency of chloride-channel opening events. This leads to an increase in chloride ion conductance, neuronal hyperpolarization, inhibition of the action potential and leads to a decrease in neuronal excitability.

Brand name

  • Apo-Alpzar
  • Nu-Alpraz

Information about Alprazolam

Alprazolam is an orally available benzodiazepine used predominantly for therapy of anxiety

Liver safety of Alprazolam

As with most benzodiazepines, alprazolam therapy has not been associated with serum aminotransferase or alkaline phosphatase elevations, and clinically apparent liver injury from alprazolam has been reported, but is very rare.

Clinical use of Alprazolam

Alprazolam (al pra' zoe lam) is a benzodiazepine that is widely used in the therapy of anxiety and panic disorder.  The antianxiety (anxiolytic) activity of the benzodiazepines is mediated by their ability to enhance gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) mediated inhibition of synaptic transmission through binding to the GABA A receptor.  Alprazolam was approved in the United States in 1981, and currently more than 40 million prescriptions are filled yearly.  Current indications are for anxiety and panic disorders

Dosage and administration for Alprazolam

Alprazolam is available in multiple generic forms and under several brand names such as Xanax or Niravam in tablets of 0.25, 0.5, 1 and 2 mg, as well as in orally disintegrating tablets in similar concentrations and as an oral solution [1 mg/mL] for pediatric use.  Extended release forms are available in tablets of 0.5, 1, 2 and 3 mg.  The recommended initial dose for adults is 0.5 mg three times daily, increasing as needed to a maximum dose of 4 mg daily in divided doses.  Higher doses are used for panic disorder.  The most common side effects of alprazolam are dose related and include drowsiness, lethargy, ataxia, dysarthria and dizziness.  Tolerance develops to these side effects, but tolerance may also develop to the anxiolytic effects.


Benzodiazipines

Anticonvulsants Drugs

Drug class for Alprazolam

Anticonvulsants, and Benzodiazepines]

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