Flurazepam is indicated in the following conditions-
- Insomnia is characterized by difficulty in falling asleep, frequent nocturnal awakenings or early morning awakenings
- Recurring insomnia or poor sleeping habits
- In acute or chronic medical situations requiring restful sleep.
Flurazepam, a benzodiazepine derivative, is a hypnotic agent which does not appear to decrease dream time as measured by rapid eye movements (REM). Furthermore, it decreases sleep latency and number of awakenings for a consequent increase in total sleep time. Flurazepam binds to an allosteric site on GABA-A receptors. Binding potentiates the action of GABA on GABA-A receptors by opening the chloride channel within the receptor, causing chloride influx and hyperpolarization.
Dosage & Administration
Adult: Usual dosage is 30 mg at bedtime. In some patients, 15 mg may sufficient.
Elderly or debilitated: 15 mg is usually sufficient for a therapeutic response.
Children: Not recommended.
In hepatic and renal impairment: Dosage may need to be reduced in patients with impaired hepatic or renal function.
Flurazepam potentiates other CNS depressants such as alcohol, barbiturates, sedative antidepressants, antihistamines and antipsychotic drugs. Cimetidine moderately prolongs the already long half-life of the active metabolite desalkyl flurazepam. Antacids may delay the absorption of benzodiazepines.
Patients with known hypersensitivity to benzodiazepines or any other ingredients of the capsule.
Dizziness, drowsiness, light-headedness, staggering, ataxia have occurred, particularly in elderly or debilitated persons. Severe sedation, lethargy, disorientation and coma have been reported.
Pregnancy & Lactation
Pregnancy category-C. Flurazepam is contraindicated in pregnant women. Lactating mothers should avoid it.
Precautions & Warnings
Since the risk of the development of oversedation, dizziness, confusion or ataxia increases substantially with larger doses in elderly and debilitated patients, it is recommended that in such patients the dosage should be limited to 15 mg. The usual precautions are indicated for severely depressed patients or those in whom there is any evidence of latent depression; particularly the recognition that suicidal tendencies may be present and protective measures may be necessary. The usual precautions should be observed in patients with chronic pulmonary insufficiency.
Flurazepam overdosage includes somnolence, confusion and coma. Respiration, pulse and blood pressure should be monitored as in all cases of drug overdosage. General supportive measures should be employed, along with immediate gastric lavage.
Capsules should be stored in a dry place at 20°-25°C temperature.
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