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Lofexidine: 7 things you should know

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on Oct 31, 2023.

1. How it works

2. Upsides

3. Downsides

If you are between the ages of 18 and 60, take no other medication or have no other medical conditions, side effects you are more likely to experience include:

Note: In general, seniors or children, people with certain medical conditions (such as liver or kidney problems, heart disease, diabetes, seizures) or people who take other medications are more at risk of developing a wider range of side effects. View complete list of side effects

4. Bottom Line

Lofexidine is used to ease the symptoms due to abruptly stopping opioids in people with opioid addiction (opioid use disorder). It is given for up to 14 days, based on symptoms and peak withdrawal, but must be slowly discontinued. Peak withdrawal typically occurs the first 5 to 7 days following last use of opioid. The main side effects are low blood pressure, a slow heartbeat (bradycardia), sleepiness, dizziness, and dry mouth.

5. Tips

6. Response and effectiveness

7. Interactions

Medicines that interact with lofexidine may either decrease its effect, affect how long it works for, increase side effects, or have less of an effect when taken with doxazosin. An interaction between two medications does not always mean that you must stop taking one of the medications; however, sometimes it does. Speak to your doctor and pharmacist about how drug interactions should be managed.

Lofexidine interacts with over 500 medications, most of these interactions are considered moderate or major. Common medications or substances that may interact with lofexidine include:

Avoid drinking alcohol while taking lofexidine, as it may increase your risk for dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating.

Lofexidine may reduce the efficacy of oral naltrexone if used together. Administer naltrexone by other routes.

Avoid using lofexidine with any other medications that decrease pulse or blood pressure to avoid the risk of excessively slowed heart rate and low blood pressure.

Avoid other medications that also cause nervous system (CNS) depression or sedation. Especially tell your healthcare provider if you take benzodiazepines, barbiturates, tranquilizers, or sleeping pills. Taking lofexidine with these medicines can cause serious side effects.

Note that this list is not all-inclusive and includes only common medications that may interact with lofexidine. You should refer to the prescribing information for lofexidine for a complete list of interactions, and discuss drug interactions with your healthcare provider.


Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use lofexidine only for the indication prescribed.

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

Copyright 1996-2024 Revision date: October 31, 2023.