Ativan Side Effects

Ativan for Chemotherapy Induced Nausea and Vomiting

Although Ativan is typically thought of as an antianxiety medication it has additional FDA approved indication for prevention of chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting. When used for prevention of chemotherapy related nausea and vomiting the typical Ativan dosage is 2.5 mg orally the night before chemotherapy and again just after chemotherapy. Often patients are at only recommended to use the Ativan dosage after chemotherapy as other medications frequently used during chemotherapy. Although the FDA recommended dose of Ativan for chemotherapy induced nausea prevention is 2.5 mg many patients use lower doses because of undue sedation from the 2.5 mg Ativan dosage.

When used intravenously Ativan is usually given as 1.5 mg/mĀ² with the maximum IV dose 3 mg proximally 45 min. prior to chemotherapy. The typical Ativan side effects when given for chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting include sedation. Many patients find the sedation not a major problem because for the day or two after chemotherapy simply are resting and waiting for the early chemotherapy side effects to resolve so that they can be more active later on.

Other medications typically used for chemotherapy induced nausea include prednisone, ondansetron, promethazine, percloperazine, EmendĀ®, and metoclopramide. Various cocktails including these and other antiemetics are often augmented by the use of Ativan with excellent success at reducing or preventing chemotherapy induced nausea and vomiting.

One Response to “Ativan for Chemotherapy Induced Nausea and Vomiting”

  • Paula says:

    I find that ativan is very helpful for nausea from chemotherapy, probably in part because I sleep so soundly on the drug. The hang-over type feeling in the morning is a drag, and I tend to have a morning headache sometimes too, but it’s worth these minor ativan side effects in order to avoid the nausea I get if I don’t use it. I only need it for the two nights after my chemo every 3 weeks. I’ve heard ativan is better than any of the other benzos for this problem.


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