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Ativan Side Effects

Generic Name: lorazepam

Note: This document contains side effect information about lorazepam. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Ativan.

In Summary

Common side effects of Ativan include: sedated state. Other side effects include: dizziness. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.

For the Consumer

Applies to lorazepam: injection solution

Other dosage forms:

Warning

Injection route (Solution)

Concomitant use of benzodiazepines and opioids may result in profound sedation, respiratory depression, coma, and death. Monitor patients for respiratory depression and sedation

Side effects requiring immediate medical attention

Along with its needed effects, lorazepam (the active ingredient contained in Ativan) may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor or nurse immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking lorazepam:

More common

  • Blue lips, fingernails, or skin
  • blurred vision
  • confusion
  • difficult or troubled breathing
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position suddenly
  • irregular, fast or slow, or shallow breathing
  • sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  • sweating
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Less common

  • Decreased awareness or responsiveness
  • not breathing
  • severe sleepiness

Rare

  • Bleeding, blistering, burning, coldness, discoloration of skin, feeling of pressure, hives, infection, inflammation, itching, lumps, numbness, pain, rash, redness, scarring, soreness, stinging, swelling, tenderness, tingling, ulceration, or warmth at the injection site
  • bloody or cloudy urine
  • change in consciousness
  • convulsions
  • cough or hoarseness
  • deep or fast breathing with dizziness
  • delusions
  • dementia
  • difficult, burning, or painful urination
  • extremely shallow or slow breathing
  • fever or chills
  • frequent urge to urinate
  • headache
  • loss of consciousness
  • lower back or side pain
  • numbness of feet, hands and around mouth
  • painful or difficult urination
  • problems with movement, walking, or speech
  • vomiting

Side effects not requiring immediate medical attention

Some side effects of lorazepam may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects.

Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Rare

  • Nausea

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to lorazepam: compounding powder, injectable solution, intravenous solution, oral concentrate, oral tablet

General

Oral: The most commonly reported side effects included sedation, dizziness, weakness, and unsteadiness.

Parenteral: The most commonly reported side effects included somnolence, respiratory failure, hypotension, and injection site reactions (pain and burning).[Ref]

Local

Parenteral:

Very common (10% or more): Burning (up to 17%), pain (up to 17%)

Common (1% to 10%): Painful response, redness

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Injection site reaction

Frequency not reported: Arteriospasm, gangrene, injection site tolerance[Ref]

Nervous system

Oral:

Very common (10% or more): Sedation (up to 15.9%)

Common (1% to 10%): Anterograde amnesia, ataxia, daytime drowsiness, dizziness, unsteadiness

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Dysarthria, headache, memory impairment, reduced alertness, slurred speech, transient anterograde amnesia

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Coma, extrapyramidal reactions, tremor

Frequency not reported: Amnesia, autonomic manifestations, convulsions/seizures, drowsiness, extremity numbness/tingling, hyperreflexia, hypersensitivity to light/noise/sound, involuntary movements, short-term memory loss, vertigo

Parenteral:

Common (1% to 10%): Coma, excessive drowsiness/sleepiness, headache, sedation, somnolence, stupor

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Brain edema, convulsion, myoclonus, tremor

Frequency not reported: Dizziness

Postmarketing reports: Amnesia, neuroleptic malignant syndrome, paralysis[Ref]

Other

Oral:

Common (1% to 10%): Asthenia, fatigue, weakness

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Chills

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Hypothermia

Frequency not reported: Hyperacusis, hyperthermia, paradoxical reactions, rebound phenomena

Parenteral:

Common (1% to 10%): Asthenia, crying, fatigue, sobbing

Frequency not reported: Depressed hearing, falls, hypothermia, paradoxical reactions, tinnitus

Postmarketing reports: Fatalities[Ref]

Psychiatric

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Change in libido, confusion, decreased orgasm, depression, disinhibition, euphoria, numbed emotions, sleep disturbances, unmasking of depression

Frequency not reported: Aggression, aggressiveness, agitation, anxiety, catatonia, dependence, delirium, delusion, disorientation, drug withdrawal symptoms, excitation, hallucinations, hostility, impotence, inappropriate behavior, irritability, insomnia, nightmares, panic attacks, psychoses, rage, restlessness, sexual arousal, suicidal attempt/ideation, tension

Parenteral:

Common (1% to 10%): Confusion, delirium, depression, restlessness, unmasking of depression, visual hallucinations

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Abnormal thinking, agitation, ataxia, change in libido, decreased orgasm, hallucinations

Frequency not reported: Aggression, agitation, anxiety, disinhibition, excitation, euphoria, hostility, inappropriate behavior, insomnia, irritability, mania, psychosis, rage, sexual arousal, sleep disturbances, stimulation, suicidal attempt/ideation

Postmarketing reports: Acute brain syndrome, nervousness[Ref]

Respiratory

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Apnea, respiratory depression, worsening of obstructive pulmonary disease, worsening of sleep apnea

Parenteral:

Common (1% to 10%): Apnea, hypoventilation, respiratory disorder, respiratory failure

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hyperventilation

Frequency not reported: Airway obstruction

Postmarketing reports: Lung edema, lung hemorrhage, pneumothorax, pulmonary hypertension, respiratory arrest[Ref]

Cardiovascular

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Hypotension

Frequency not reported: Palpitations, small decreases in blood pressure

Parenteral:

Common (1% to 10%): Hypotension

Postmarketing reports: Arrhythmia, bradycardia, heart arrest/failure, heart block, pericardial effusion, tachycardia, ventricular arrhythmia[Ref]

Musculoskeletal

Oral:

Frequency not reported: Muscle pain

Parenteral:

Common (1% to 10%): Muscle weakness[Ref]

Gastrointestinal

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Constipation, nausea, salivation changes

Frequency not reported: Abdominal cramps, dry mouth, gastrointestinal symptoms, hypersalivation, vomiting

Parenteral:

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Increased salivation, nausea, vomiting

Frequency not reported: Constipation

Postmarketing reports: Gastrointestinal hemorrhage[Ref]

Metabolic

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Change in appetite, increase in alkaline phosphatase

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Hyponatremia

Frequency not reported: Loss of appetite

Parenteral:

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Acidosis, increased alkaline phosphatase

Frequency not reported: Hyponatremia[Ref]

Dermatologic

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Allergic dermatitis, rash

Frequency not reported: Allergic skin reactions, alopecia, dermatological symptoms, sweating

Parenteral:

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Hypertension, hypotension

Frequency not reported: Allergic skin reactions, alopecia, skin rash[Ref]

Hepatic

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Abnormal liver function test values, increase in bilirubin, increase in liver transaminases, jaundice

Parenteral:

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Abnormal liver function tests

Postmarketing reports: Liver damage[Ref]

Genitourinary

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Impotence

Parenteral:

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Impotence

Postmarketing reports: Urinary incontinence[Ref]

Immunologic

Parenteral:

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): infection[Ref]

Renal

Parenteral:

Uncommon (0.1% to 1%): Cystitis[Ref]

Ocular

Oral:

Rare (0.01% to 0.1%): Blurred vision, diplopia, eye function/visual disturbance

Parenteral:

Frequency not reported: Blurred vision, diplopia[Ref]

Hematologic

Oral:

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Agranulocytosis, leukopenia, pancytopenia, thrombocytopenia

Parenteral:

Frequency not reported: Agranulocytosis, hypochromic anemia, leukocytosis, pancytopenia, thrombocythemia, thrombocytopenia

Postmarketing reports: Coagulation disorder[Ref]

Hypersensitivity

Oral:

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Anaphylactoid reactions, anaphylaxis, hypersensitivity

Frequency not reported: Hypersensitivity reactions

Parenteral:

Frequency not reported: Anaphylactic reactions, anaphylactoid reactions, angioedema, hypersensitivity reactions[Ref]

Endocrine

Oral:

Very rare (less than 0.01%): Syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion (SIADH)

Parenteral:

Frequency not reported: Syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion (SIADH)

Postmarketing reports: Aggravation of pheochromocytoma[Ref]

References

1. Cerner Multum, Inc. "Australian Product Information." O 0

2. Cerner Multum, Inc. "UK Summary of Product Characteristics." O 0

3. "Product Information. Ativan (lorazepam)." Wyeth-Ayerst Laboratories, Philadelphia, PA.

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.

Some side effects may not be reported. You may report them to the FDA.

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