What is this medication for?
Alprazolam extended release belongs to the class of medications called benzodiazepines. It is used to treat panic disorder. It works by slowing down excessive activity of nerves in the brain (central nervous system).
Your doctor may have suggested this medication for conditions other than those listed here. As well, some forms of this medication may not be used for all of the conditions discussed here. If you are not sure why you are taking this medication, speak to your doctor. Do not stop taking this medication without consulting your doctor.
Do not give this medication to anyone else, even if they have the same symptoms as you do. It can be harmful for people to take this medication if their doctor has not prescribed it.
What form(s) does this medication come in?
Xanax XR® is available as:
Some medications may have other generic brands available. Always ask your doctor or pharmacist about the safety of switching between brands of the same medication.
How should I use this medication?
The recommended dosage of alprazolam extended release for adults varies depending on its use. Doses range from 0.5 mg to 6 mg given once daily, preferably in the morning. The tablets should be swallowed whole (not chewed, crushed, or broken).
The dose is usually started low and increased if necessary as prescribed by your doctor. It is important that the dose be individualized to your specific needs to avoid excessive drowsiness or problems controlling muscle movement. Some people may require doses greater than 6 mg per day.
Alprazolam extended release may be habit-forming when taken for long periods of time. If you have been taking this medication regularly for a long period of time (i.e., more than one month), do not stop taking the medication without speaking with your doctor. A gradual reduction in dose is recommended when stopping this medication to avoid withdrawal effects.
Many things can affect the dose of medication that a person needs, such as body weight, other medical conditions, and other medications. If your doctor has recommended a dose different from the ones listed here, do not change the way that you are taking the medication without consulting your doctor.
It is important to take this medication exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as possible and continue with your regular schedule. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one. If you are not sure what to do after missing a dose, contact your doctor or pharmacist for advice.
Store this medication at room temperature, protect it from light and moisture, and keep it out of the reach of children.
Who should NOT take this medication?
Do not take this medication if you:
- are allergic to alprazolam, other benzodiazepines, or any ingredients of the medication
- are taking ketoconazole or itraconazole
- have acute narrow-angle glaucoma
Alprazolam extended release may be taken by people with open-angle glaucoma who are receiving appropriate therapy.