Diazepam is used to treat anxiety, muscle spasms, and alcohol withdrawal. The injection form is used when prompt relief is desired or when the medication cannot be taken by mouth.
This medication is also used for the short-term treatment of serious seizures that do not stop (status epilepticus). It is not for ongoing daily use to prevent seizures.
Diazepam is also used before a surgery or procedure to cause drowsiness, decrease anxiety, and to help the patient forget what happened during the surgery/procedure.
This medication works by calming the brain and nerves. Diazepam belongs to a class of drugs known as benzodiazepines.
Using diazepam with opioid medications (such as codeine, hydrocodone) may increase your risk of very serious side effects, including death. To lower your risk, your doctor should have you use the smallest dose of diazepam that works, and use it for the shortest possible time. Get medical help right away if any of these very serious side effects occur: slow/shallow breathing, unusual lightheadedness, severe drowsiness/dizziness, difficulty waking up.
How to Use This Medication
This medication is given by injection into a vein or deep into a muscle as directed by your doctor. You should be closely monitored for several hours after receiving this medication.
If you are using this medication at home, learn all preparation and usage instructions from your health care professional. Before using, check this product visually for particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely.
The dosage is based on your medical condition, age, and response to treatment. Giving the medication too fast into a vein can cause serious side effects. If giving this medication into a vein, inject it slowly into a large vein. Do not inject this medication into an artery or into the skin.
If you suddenly stop using this medication, you may have withdrawal symptoms (such as shaking, abdominal/muscle cramps, vomiting, sweating, anxiety, restlessness, seizures). To help prevent withdrawal, your doctor may lower your dose slowly. Withdrawal is more likely if you have used diazepam for a long time or in high doses. Tell your doctor or pharmacist right away if you have withdrawal.
When this medication is used for a long time, it may not work as well. Talk with your doctor if this medication stops working well.
Though it helps many people, this medication may sometimes cause addiction. This risk may be higher if you have a substance use disorder (such as overuse of or addiction to drugs/alcohol). Take this medication exactly as prescribed to lower the risk of addiction. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.