ATIVAN (lorazepam) 3 Serious Warnings And Precautions Box

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Serious Warnings and Precautions

Addiction, Abuse and Misuse

The use of benzodiazepines, including ATIVAN can lead to abuse, misuse, addiction, physical dependence and withdrawal reactions. Abuse and misuse can result in overdose or death, especially when benzodiazepines are combined with other medicines, such as opioids, alcohol or illicit drugs.

  • Assess each patient’s risk prior to prescribing ATIVAN
  • Monitor all patients regularly for the development of these behaviours or conditions
  • ATIVAN should be stored securely to avoid theft or misuse


Benzodiazepines, like ATIVAN can produce severe or life-threatening withdrawal symptoms

  • Avoid abrupt discontinuation or rapid dose reduction of ATIVAN
  • Terminate treatment with ATIVAN by gradually tapering the dosage schedule under close monitoring 
    (see 7 WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS, Dependence/Tolerance)

Risks from Concomitant use with Opioids

Concomitant use of ATIVAN and opioids may result in profound sedation, respiratory depression, coma and death (see 7 WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS – Risks from concomitant use of opioids and benzodiazapines).

  • Reserve concomitant prescribing of these drugs for use in patients for whom alternative treatment options are inadequate
  • Limit dosages and durations to the minimum required
  • Follow patients for signs and symptoms of respiratory depression and sedation