Part of a class of drugs called benzodiazepines, Diazepam (Valium®) is used to treat anxiety, muscle spasms, and certain other conditions. Even though most people respond well to diazepam, dangers associated with this medication should still be reviewed with your healthcare provider before you start treatment.
For example, diazepam can cause a number of potentially serious problems, including severe drowsiness and difficulty breathing. This risk is increased when the drug is combined with alcohol, narcotics, or other medications or substances that cause drowsiness and sedation.
Diazepam may also worsen certain medical conditions, so it is important to talk to your healthcare provider before taking this medicine if you have:
- A history of drug or alcohol abuse (see Valium and Alcohol)
- Liver disease, including liver failure or cirrhosis
- Kidney disease, including kidney failure (renal failure)
- Any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
It is also important to be aware of the potential side effects of diazepam. Some of the negative reactions that were reported with this medication during clinical studies included coordination problems, headaches, and drowsiness.
(Click Diazepam Side Effects and Precautions and Warnings With Diazepam for more information about the potential dangers of diazepam, to find out what other side effects may occur, and for warnings on who should not use this particular medicine.)