Estazolam is used for the short-term treatment of insomnia (difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep). Estazolam is in a class of medications called benzodiazepines. It works by slowing activity in the brain to allow sleep.
Estazolam comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It is usually taken as needed at bedtime or after going to bed and having difficulty falling asleep. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take estazolam exactly as directed.
You will probably become very sleepy after you take estazolam and may remain sleepy for some time. Plan to go to bed right after you take estazolam and to stay in bed for a full night. Do not take estazolam if you will be unable to remain asleep for a full night after you take the medication.
Your sleep problems should improve within 7 to 10 days after you start taking estazolam. Call your doctor if your sleep problems do not improve during this time, if they worsen at any time during your treatment, or if you notice any unusual changes in your thoughts or behavior.
Estazolam can be habit-forming. Do not take a larger dose, take it more often, or take it for a longer time than prescribed by your doctor.
If your doctor has told you to take estazolam regularly, talk to your doctor before you stop taking this medication. Your doctor will probably decrease your dose gradually. If you suddenly stop taking estazolam, you may experience withdrawal symptoms such as difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, uncontrollable shaking of a part of the body, stomach and muscle cramps, vomiting, sweating, sad mood, seeing things or hearing sounds that do not exist, and seizures.
Your doctor or pharmacist will give you the manufacturer's patient information sheet (Medication Guide) when you begin treatment with estazolam and each time you refill your prescription. Read the information carefully and ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. You can also visit the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/DrugSafety/ucm085729.htm or the manufacturer's website to obtain the Medication Guide.
This medication may be prescribed for other uses. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of taking estazolam if you are 65 years of age or older. Older adults should not usually take estazolam because it is not as safe as other medications that can be used to treat the same condition.
You will probably be told to take estazolam as needed. If your doctor tells you to take estazolam regularly and you miss a dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one and do not take estazolam unless you are ready to go to bed and stay asleep for a full night.
hangover effect (grogginess)
changes in behavior
slowed or uncoordinated movements
swelling of the eyes, face, lips, tongue, throat, arms, hands, feet, ankles, or lower legs
difficulty breathing or swallowing
hallucinations (seeing things or hearing voices that do not exist)
thinking about harming or killing yourself or planning or trying to do so
Estazolam may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while you are taking this medication.
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online [at http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch] or by phone [1-800-332-1088].
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.
loss of coordination
coma (loss of consciousness for a period of time)
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Estazolam is a controlled substance. Prescriptions may be refilled only a limited number of times; ask your pharmacist if you have any questions.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
Last Revised - 06/01/2010
AHFS® Consumer Medication Information. © Copyright, 2013. The American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, Inc., 7272 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland. All Rights Reserved. Duplication for commercial use must be authorized by ASHP.