Diastat Warnings and Precautions
It's important to understand Diastat warnings and precautions prior to beginning treatment. Tell your healthcare provider if you have glaucoma, petit mal seizures, or liver or kidney disease. You should also tell him or her about any medications you are currently taking. Diastat warnings and precautions also extend to people who have acute narrow-angle glaucoma or who are allergic to the medication or any of its ingredients.
Diastat: What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider?You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking Diastat® (diazepam rectal gel) if you have:
- Petit mal seizures or absence seizures
- Asthma, pneumonia, or other breathing problems
- Liver disease, including liver failure or cirrhosis
- Kidney disease, including kidney failure (renal failure)
- Any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all of the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
Specific Diastat Warnings and PrecautionsWarnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking Diastat include the following:
- Diastat is a controlled substance, which means that it has the potential to be abused. There are special rules and regulations for prescribing and dispensing it. Benzodiazepines (including Diastat) are generally not recommended for people with a history of alcohol or drug abuse.
- The medication can cause severe drowsiness and difficulty breathing, which may be life threatening. This risk is increased when Diastat is combined with alcohol, narcotics, or other medications or substances that cause drowsiness and sedation (see Diastat Drug Interactions). You should not drive or operate heavy machinery until you know how the drug will affect you.
- Diastat is not for daily use. Using it too often can make it less effective and can actually increase your risk of seizures. Let your healthcare provider know if you are using Diastat more frequently than once a week or five times a month.
- Elderly people are more sensitive to the effects of Diastat and may need a lower Diastat dosage.
- Let your healthcare provider know if you have liver or kidney disease, as your body may not handle Diastat as well as it should.
- The medication can cause breathing problems, especially in people with asthma, pneumonia, or other lung problems.
- Other forms of diazepam (the active ingredient in Diastat) have been known to cause dangerous seizures when used to treat petit mal seizures (also known as absence seizures). It is not known if this is also true of Diastat.
- Diastat is considered a pregnancy Category D medication. This means that it is probably not safe for use during pregnancy. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of using the drug while pregnant (see Diastat and Pregnancy).
- Diastat passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Diastat and Breastfeeding).