Diazepam

Pediatric Medication

This information from Lexicomp® explains what you need to know about this medication, including what it’s used for, how to take it, its side effects, and when to call your healthcare provider.

Brand Names: US

Diastat AcuDial; Diastat Pediatric; diazePAM Intensol; Valium; Valtoco 10 MG Dose; Valtoco 15 MG Dose; Valtoco 20 MG Dose; Valtoco 5 MG Dose

Brand Names: Canada

BIO-Diazepam; Diastat; Diazepam 10 [DSC]; Diazepam 5 [DSC]; PMS-Diazepam; Valium

Warning

  • This drug is a benzodiazepine. The use of a benzodiazepine drug along with opioid drugs has led to very bad side effects. Side effects that have happened include slowed or trouble breathing and death. Opioid drugs include drugs like codeine, oxycodone, and morphine. Opioid drugs are used to treat pain and some are used to treat cough. Talk with the doctor.
  • If your child is taking this drug with an opioid drug, get medical help right away if your child feels very sleepy or dizzy; if your child has slow, shallow, or trouble breathing; or if your child passes out. Get medical help right away if your child does not respond, does not answer or react like normal, or will not wake up.

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to relax muscles.
  • It is used to treat alcohol withdrawal.
  • It is used to help control certain kinds of seizures.
  • It is used to treat anxiety.
  • It is used to calm a child before a procedure.
  • It may be given to your child for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

What do I need to tell the doctor BEFORE my child takes this drug?

All products:

  • If your child is allergic to this drug; any part of this drug; or any other drugs, foods, or substances. Tell the doctor about the allergy and what signs your child had.
  • If your child has any of these health problems: Breathing problems, glaucoma, liver disease, myasthenia gravis, or sleep apnea.
  • If your child has psychosis.
  • If your child has recently drunk a lot of alcohol or taken a big amount of drugs that may slow your child’s actions like phenobarbital or some pain drugs like oxycodone.

All oral products:

  • If your child is younger than 6 months of age. Do not give this drug to an infant younger than 6 months of age.

This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this drug.

Tell the doctor and pharmacist about all of your child’s drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for your child to take this drug with all of his/her drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug your child takes without checking with the doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while my child takes this drug?

All products:

  • Tell all of your child’s health care providers that your child is taking this drug. This includes your child’s doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Have your child avoid tasks or actions that call for alertness or clear eyesight until you see how this drug affects your child. These are things like riding a bike, playing sports, or using items such as scissors, lawnmowers, electric scooters, toy cars, or motorized vehicles.
  • Alcohol may interact with this drug. Be sure your child does not drink alcohol.
  • Talk with the doctor before giving your child other drugs and natural products that may slow your child’s actions.
  • Use with care in children. Talk with the doctor.

If your child is pregnant or breast-feeding a baby:

  • This drug may cause harm to the unborn baby if your child takes it during pregnancy. If your child is pregnant or gets pregnant while taking this drug, call the doctor right away.
  • Tell your child’s doctor if your child is breast-feeding a baby. This drug passes into breast milk and may harm your child’s baby.

Nose spray and rectal gel:

  • This drug is not meant for regular, daily use. Talk with the doctor.

All other products:

  • This drug may be habit-forming with long-term use.
  • Do not change the dose or stop your child’s drug. This could cause seizures. Talk with your child’s doctor.
  • If your child has been taking this drug on a regular basis and stops taking it all of a sudden, your child may have signs of withdrawal. Do not stop giving this drug all of a sudden without calling the doctor. Tell the doctor if your child has any bad effects.
  • Have your child’s blood work checked if he/she is on this drug for a long time. Talk with your child’s doctor.

Injection and nose spray:

  • Some products have benzyl alcohol. Do not give a product that has benzyl alcohol in it to a newborn or infant. Talk with the doctor to see if this product has benzyl alcohol in it.

What are some side effects that I need to call my child’s doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your child’s doctor or get medical help right away if your child has any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

All products:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Shortness of breath.
  • Change in balance.
  • Feeling confused.
  • Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there).
  • Memory problems or loss.
  • Very bad dizziness or passing out.
  • Muscle spasm.
  • Twitching.
  • Trouble sleeping.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • If seizures are worse or not the same after starting this drug.
  • Like other drugs that may be used for seizures, this drug may rarely raise the risk of suicidal thoughts or actions. The risk may be higher in people who have had suicidal thoughts or actions in the past. Call the doctor right away about any new or worse signs like depression; feeling nervous, restless, or grouchy; panic attacks; or other changes in mood or behavior. Call the doctor right away if any suicidal thoughts or actions occur.

Injection (I.V.):

  • This drug may cause tissue damage if the drug leaks from the vein. Tell your child’s nurse if your child has any redness, burning, pain, swelling, blisters, skin sores, or leaking of fluid where the drug is going into your child’s body.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your child’s doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother your child or do not go away:

All products:

  • Feeling sleepy.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Muscle weakness.

Nose spray and rectal gel:

  • Headache.

Nose spray:

  • Nose irritation.

Injection:

  • Irritation where the shot is given.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your child’s doctor. Call your child’s doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best given?

Give this drug as ordered by your child’s doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

All oral products:

  • Give this drug with or without food. Give with food if it causes an upset stomach.

Liquid (solution):

  • Make sure you have the right liquid; there is more than one strength.
  • Measure liquid doses carefully. Use the measuring device that comes with this drug. If there is none, ask the pharmacist for a device to measure this drug.

Liquid (concentrate):

  • Make sure you have the right liquid; there is more than one strength.
  • Use the dropper that comes with this drug to measure the drug.
  • Mix liquid with water, fruit juice, soda, applesauce, or pudding.
  • Give the mixture right away. Do not store for use at a later time.

Rectal:

  • Do not give more than 5 times in a month or more than once every 5 days.
  • Check to make sure the right dose is locked in. You will see a green ready band.
  • Call the doctor right away if your child keeps having seizures for 15 minutes after you give this drug, unless the doctor has told you to do something else.

Nose spray:

  • If you will be using this drug at home, your doctor or nurse will teach you how to use it.
  • Do not give this drug by mouth. Use in your child’s nose only. Keep out of your child’s mouth and eyes (may burn).
  • Be sure you know how to use before an emergency happens. Read the package insert and instructions for use that come with this drug. If you have any questions about how to use this drug, talk with the doctor or pharmacist.
  • Keep this drug with you and your child at all times. Your child may want to keep extra ones at work, school, and home.
  • Someone else may have to give this drug. Be sure others know where this drug is stored and how to give it if needed.
  • Do not test or prime before using.
  • If needed, a second dose may be used at least 4 hours after the first dose if your doctor has told you to. Do not use more than 2 doses for the same seizure.
  • If the seizure does not stop after using this drug, get medical help right away.
  • Each container is for one use only. Use right after opening. Throw away any part of the opened container after the dose is given.

Injection:

  • It is given as a shot into a muscle or vein.

What do I do if my child misses a dose?

All oral products:

  • If your child takes this drug on a regular basis, give a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your child’s next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your child’s normal time.
  • Do not use 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
  • Many times this drug is given on an as needed basis. Do not give to your child more often than told by the doctor.

Nose spray and rectal gel:

  • Get medical help right away.

Injection:

  • Call your child’s doctor to find out what to do.

How do I store and/or throw out this drug?

All oral products:

  • Store at room temperature protected from light. Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.

Liquid (concentrate):

  • Throw away any part not used after 3 months.

Rectal:

  • Store at room temperature in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Store in the case you were given.

Nose spray:

  • Store at room temperature in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Store in the original container to protect from light.
  • Do not freeze.

Injection:

  • If you need to store this drug at home, talk with your child’s doctor, nurse, or pharmacist about how to store it.

All products:

  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.

General drug facts

  • If your child’s symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your child’s doctor.
  • Do not share your child’s drug with others and do not give anyone else’s drug to your child.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your child’s doctor, nurse, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

Last Reviewed Date

2020-01-20

Copyright

© 2020 Wolters Kluwer Clinical Drug Information, Inc. and its affiliates and/or licensors. All rights reserved.

Last Updated