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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Clonazepam: a review of its pharmacological properties and therapeutic efficacy in epilepsy.

Clonazepam or 5-(2-chlorphenyl)-1, 3-dihydro-7-nitro-2H-1,4benzodiazepin-2-one, is a close structural and pharmacological relative of nitrazepam. It has a broad spectrum of activity against the various types of epilepsy, and is effective in many patients whose condition has proved resistant to other antiepileptic drugs. Its chief uses are in status epilepticus, in which intravenous clonazepam may replace diazepam as the drug of first choice, and in the minor motor seizures of childhood, particularly petit mal absences, the Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and infantile spasms. Clonazepam is also at least as effective as current treatment in psychomotor and myoclonic epilepsies, but seems unlikely to replace phenytoin and the barbiturates in the treatment of grand mal or focal motor seizures except in patients resistant to standard therapy. Initial success with clonazepam can be followed by loss of effect, but benefit can often be restored, at least initially, by temporary interruption and re-institution of treatment. Side-effects are common with clonazepam. Most patients experience drowsiness and fatigue, which are frequent causes of withdrawal, together with lesser incidences of ataxia, dystonia, hypotonia, and hyperactivity. These effects usually disappear with continued therapy, and are minimised by gradual introduction of the drug over 2-4 weeks. Hypersalivation and excessive bronchial secretion may be a problem in children and infants.[1]


  1. Clonazepam: a review of its pharmacological properties and therapeutic efficacy in epilepsy. Pinder, R.M., Brogden, R.N., Speight, T.M., Avery, G.S. Drugs (1976) [Pubmed]
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