Clonazepam

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Clonazepam is a benzodiazepine drugs with anxiolytic, anticonvulsant, muscle relaxant, sedative, and hypnotic properties.

After oral administration, clonazepam is rapidly absorbed, but due to high protein-binding following uptake, has bioavailability poor and variable responses pharmacokinetically[1].

This drug is used in canine medicine for treatment of seizures[2], separation anxiety, abnormal sleep disorders[3] and obsessive compulsive disorder.

Physical dependence occurs with this drug in dogs that have been prescribed long courses (>6 weeks) and should be used with caution and withdrawn slowly[4].

In cases of overdose or withdrawal symptoms, the effects of this drug can be counteracted by the benzodiazepine antagonist flumazenil[5].

Recommended dose rate in dogs is 0.5 mg/kg given orally every 8 - 12 hours[6].

References

  1. Al-Tahan F et al (1984) Pharmacokinetics of clonazepam in the dog. Arch Int Pharmacodyn Ther 268(2):180-193
  2. Scherkl R et al (1985) Anticonvulsant effect of clonazepam in the dog: development of tolerance and physical dependence. Arch Int Pharmacodyn Ther 278(2):249-260
  3. Hendricks JC et al (1989) Movement disorders during sleep in cats and dogs. J Am Vet Med Assoc 194(5):686-689
  4. Scherkl R & Frey HH (1986) Physical dependence on clonazepam in dogs. Pharmacology 32(1):18-24
  5. Heniff MS et al (1997) Comparison of routes of flumazenil administration to reverse midazolam-induced respiratory depression in a canine model. Acad Emerg Med 4(12):1115-1118
  6. Scherkl R et al (1990) Metabolism of central neurotransmitters during development of tolerance to the anticonvulsant effect of clonazepam and of physical dependence on the drug in dogs. Arch Int Pharmacodyn Ther 305:172-182