Diastat Side Effects, Dosage & Cost

What is a seizure?
A seizure is an abnormal and unregulated electrical impulse that happens in the brain’s cortical gray matter. It temporarily interrupts normal brain function. It usually causes altered awareness of circumstances, unusual sensations, focal involuntary movements or spasms and involuntary contraction of voluntary muscles. About 2% of adults have a seizure at some point during their life, two thirds of that 2% never have a second one.

What is Diastat?
Diastat (Diazepam) is a rectal gel which contains diazepam, propylene glycol, ethyl alcohol, hydroxypropyl, methylcellulose, sodium benzoate, benzyl alcohol, benzoic acid and water. Diazepam, the active ingredient, is an anticonvulsant. It’s only recommended for short-term treatment, not chronic or daily use. It’s suggested use is only five times per month, no closer than five days apart. Diastat is manufactured by Valeant Pharmaceuticals.

How does Diastat work?
Diastat is in a group of drugs called benzodiazepines that affect chemicals in the brain that cause seizures. It’s quickly absorbed from the lining of the rectum and therefore quickly achieves therapeutic levels. It usually starts controlling the seizure five to fifteen minutes after it’s administered. It works by slowing down nerves in the brain.

What is the history of Diastat?
In 1817 DRAXIS Health announced, “We are pleased to have launched Diastat, our second neurology product licensed from Elan…..”

In November 1996, Athena Neurosciences sought approval by the FDA to sell a gel form of Diazepam under the name Diastat. It was approved in the summer of 1997.

What are common side effects from Diastat?
Side effects include headaches, pain, mental changes, drowsiness, dizziness, diarrhea and unsteadiness. Unlikely side effects, which should be reported to your physician immediately, can be slow or labored breathing, a rash, or itching.

What is the average Diastat dosage and cost?
The dosage is based on age, medical history and weight, and will be determined by your doctor. If an extra dose is prescribed and missed, your physician should be contacted. It comes in syringes prepared with the appropriate dose. The syringe has a rectal tip for pediatric, universal or adult size. Pediatric dosages come in 2.5 and 5.0 mg. The universal size is 10 mg and the adult dose comes in a 15 or 20 mg syringe.

Note: Click here for alternative and dietary options for seizure management.

Write a comment