Many healthcare providers prescribe clonazepam (Klonopin®) for the treatment of panic disorders and epileptic seizures. The prescription drug is part of a class of medications called benzodiazepines, which work by enhancing the effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), a brain chemical that is naturally calming.
Benzodiazepine medications have several effects on the body. The effects of clonazepam may include:
Clonazepam can be used to treat panic disorder that may or may not be accompanied by agoraphobia. For the treatment of epileptic seizures, the medicine is specifically approved to treat:
- Seizures associated with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (a severe form of epilepsy)
- Akinetic seizures (also known as atonic seizures), which are characterized by a sudden loss of muscle tone, causing "drop attacks"
- Myoclonic seizures, which are characterized by sudden, brief muscle jerks
- Absence seizures, which are characterized by brief periods of decreased awareness or "spacing out."
(Click Clonazepam for more information about the specific effects of this drug, to find out what side effects to look out for during the treatment process, and for suggestions on when and how to take this medicine.)