What Is Ativan?

Many people may want to know what Ativan is. Ativan® (lorazepam) is a prescription medication used to treat anxiety disorders. There is also an injectable version of the medication used for decreasing nervous tension and anxiety before surgery, as well as for treating severe seizures (known medically as status epilepticus).
Ativan is part of a group of medicines called benzodiazepines. These medications work by enhancing the effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a brain chemical that is naturally calming. GABA can slow down or stop certain nerve signals in the brain. As a result, Ativan has several effects on the body, including:
  • Reducing anxiety
  • Causing sleepiness
  • Relaxing muscles
  • Stopping seizures
  • Impairing short-term memory.
Although most people do not experience problems with this medication, Ativan can cause side effects. Some of the common side effects include dizziness, weakness, and unsteadiness. Ativan comes in the form of a tablet, an oral liquid, or as an injection.
(For more information, click Ativan. This article provides a complete overview of Ativan, including information on its uses, how it works, possible side effects, and what to tell your healthcare provider before starting treatment.)
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