- The Difference between Tranxene and Xanax
- Differences and Similarities between Tranxene and Xanax
- List Of Benzodiazepines From Weakest to Strongest
- About Benzodiazepines
- Risks And Dangers Of Benzodiazepine Abuse
- Overdose From Benzodiazepines
- Find Treatment For A Benzodiazepine Addiction
- Etizolam vs. Xanax: What’s the Difference? What You Need to Know
- WHY IS ETIZOLAM USED?
- HOW MUCH ETIZOLAM IS EQUAL TO XANAX?
The Difference between Tranxene and Xanax
Xanax is the brand name of a drug that includes the generic drug alprazolam as its active ingredient. Classified as a benzodiazepine, Xanax is one of the most widely used drugs on the market for anxiety disorders and panic disorders. In fact, according to Health Research Funding, Xanax is the fifth most commonly prescribed medication in the US.
The widespread availability of Xanax is troubling for a host of reasons. For instance, among individuals who abuse Xanax, average daily intake is 20-30 pills. Pharmacies are the source of these pills, not illegal drug labs (as in the case of heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine, among other drugs). National surveys often look at Xanax abuse as part of overall prescription drug abuse, which means a precise number of users across the country is not readily available. However, it is estimated that, on average, 60,000 individuals visit an emergency room department each year as a direct result of Xanax use.
Like Xanax, Tranxene is a branded drug classified as a benzodiazepine. The generic active ingredient in Tranxene is clorazepate dipotassium. This medication is indicated for the treatment of anxiety, seizures, and withdrawal from an alcohol use disorder. Tranxene, like Xanax and other benzodiazepines, has a high risk of abuse.
Addiction to Tranxene or Xanax is unlikely in prescribed users who follow doctors’ orders of use. However, if a prescribed user takes more Tranxene or Xanax than necessary, the risk of addiction increases. Among recreational users who have no medical need for Tranxene or Xanax, there is an especially high risk of addiction, as there is no ceiling on how much of this drug may be taken nor is there an overseeing doctor to check the amount taken. It appears that there is less buzz about Tranxene abuse than Xanax abuse, which may owe to how much more the latter is prescribed in the US.
Differences and Similarities between Tranxene and Xanax
As RxList notes, benzodiazepines are often prescribed or used interchangeably under a doctor’s orders. However, Xanax and Tranxene are similar in that they are commonly prescribed to treat anxiety disorders. Tranxene, however, is included among the benzodiazepines indicated for the treatment of seizures, while Xanax is not. To add a layer of complexity to matters, from a lay standpoint, doctors are often permitted to prescribe medications “off-label” as long as the decision is based on sound medical thinking. This may then mean that Xanax and Tranxene are prescribed for conditions for which the lay public is not generally aware.
Anytime Xanax or Tranxene is prescribed, there is a possibility the medication will be abused (no one is immune from drug abuse) and a possibility that the drug will somehow be diverted to those who don’t hold prescriptions for the drug. This is the reality of prescription medications in the US today.
A main point of difference between Xanax and Tranxene relates to onset times and duration of effects. The following is a simple breakdown of these differences:
- Tranxene is considered to have a rapid onset, and its effects usually take hold within 30-60 minutes.
- Xanax has an intermediate onset range, which means that it will typically take longer for this drug to take effect compared to Tranxene.
- Tranxene is a short-acting benzodiazepine. Typically, the effects of Tranxene will wear off within 3-8 hours.
- Xanax has intermediate-acting properties, which means that it is slower acting than Tranxene. Usually, the effects of Xanax last 11-20 hours.
To highlight a main difference between Tranxene and Xanax, it is helpful to consider the effect that alcohol can have on these drugs. It is well established that when alcohol is taken with or after a benzodiazepine, it can cause more of the benzodiazepine to reach the brain. In other words, the effect of the benzodiazepine is heightened. By some estimates, three drinks plus a benzodiazepine (even at a low dose) can equal approximately six drinks.
Consider the window of activity of Tranxene and Xanax. Since Tranxene typically spends less time in the body, if a person waits at least 3-8 hours to drink, there may not be a hazardous interaction. However, Xanax can remain in the body for so long that the next day it may be possible for a person to drink while still having this benzodiazepine in the body.
In this way, it appears that some individuals — those who don’t take benzodiazepines and alcohol at the same time or within a short window of time — will not realize that they have consumed a dangerous combination of drugs.
The onset time of a benzodiazepine can be relevant to when withdrawal symptoms emerge. Typically, the faster acting a benzodiazepine is and the shorter its window of activity, the sooner withdrawal symptoms emerge. However, at the same time, it is necessary to bear in mind that there is no set rule for when withdrawal symptoms will develop after last use of a benzodiazepine, nor for how long withdrawal will last. However, it appears that withdrawal symptoms emerge sooner for a person who has been abusing Tranxene (because of its faster onset and shorter window of metabolism) compared to Xanax.
To illuminate the similarities between Tranxene and Xanax, it is useful to look at some of the most common withdrawal symptoms associated with each drug. The following are some of the withdrawal symptoms that have emerged in people who have stopped taking Tranxene:
- Abdominal cramps
- Muscle cramps
- Memory impairment
The following are some of the known psychological and physical Xanax withdrawal symptoms:
- Memory problems
- Mood swings
- Muscle pain
Even a cursory review of each lists reveals how related the two states of withdrawal can be.
Tranxene and Xanax withdrawal have one critical characteristic in common: Withdrawal from both drugs can present numerous negative side effects, some of which can be severe. For this reason, there is a general recommendation that an individual in withdrawal from either drug undergo medical detox. During this process, the recovering individual is gradually tapered off the benzodiazepine. Tapering off helps to ensure that some of the most harmful side effects, such as seizures, do not occur. This approach avoids sending the body into benzodiazepine deprivation, after it has become accustomed to its presence.
While medical detox is most always advisable, it is never enough on its own. As the National Institute on Drug Abuse explains, detox is a necessary part of the rehab process, but it is not sufficient without follow-up care. After a person is safely weaned off Tranxene or Xanax, or their tapering schedule has stabilized, it is necessary to provide primary addiction treatment services. This stage of recovery is composed mainly of therapy (individual and group) and supportive services, such as group recovery meetings.
List Of Benzodiazepines From Weakest to Strongest
Benzodiazepine medications are sedative-hypnotics, meaning they create calming or tranquilizing effects. Because of this, these drugs are prescribed to treat anxiety, insomnia, panic and seizure disorders, and symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. Certain ones may also be used as muscle relaxants. The same actions which make these medications valuable within treatment also make them enticing to drug abusers.
Benzodiazepines take several forms, including as an extended-release (long-acting) capsule, liquid, tablet, or orally-disintegrating tablet. Any of these forms may be abused to create a sedated effect or euphoria.
When abused, benzodiazepines are taken orally in doses larger and more frequent than would be prescribed. The medication may also be crushed so that it can be snorted, smoked, or injected. No matter how benzodiazepines are abused, the potential for dependence and addiction runs high.
Risks And Dangers Of Benzodiazepine Abuse
Aside from addiction, benzodiazepine abuse carries with it a host of adverse health effects and dangers. These include:
- Alzheimer’s disease and dementia
- birth defects
- falls and injuries
- irregular heartbeat
- motor vehicle accidents
- sexual assault
Like all forms of drug abuse, individuals who abuse benzodiazepines frequently experience an extreme loss of quality of life. In many cases, the need to use the drug becomes so extreme that it overrules a person’s desire to take care of their family or fulfill other obligations, such as those relating to work or school.
Benzodiazepine abuse has been linked to increased risks of suicide and suicidal ideation (thoughts of suicide). Chronic use of these drugs may change a person’s ability to feel emotions. Some people struggle to feel any emotions at all, a state referred to as “emotional anesthesia.”
Prolonged benzodiazepine abuse can cause some very problems the drugs are designed to treat. When a physically-dependent person quits benzodiazepines, withdrawal can set in. In certain cases, withdrawal may last for several months. This is called post-acute withdrawal syndrome (PAWS). Individuals facing PAWS experience anxiety, depression, and insomnia.
Acute withdrawal from benzodiazepine drugs can become very dangerous, to the extent that professional treatment is necessary (medical detox). Certain individuals may experience withdrawal so severe that their life is in jeopardy. In these instances, withdrawal may cause seizures or delirium tremens.
Overdose From Benzodiazepines
One of the greatest risks of benzodiazepine abuse is an overdose. According to the CDC, from 2010 to 2014, two of the top 10 drugs responsible for overdose deaths were benzodiazepines. These were alprazolam (Xanax) and diazepam (Valium).
As a central nervous system (CNS) depressants, benzodiazepines have the capacity to slow vital life support systems to deadly levels. When this happens, a person’s body temperature, blood pressure, breathing, and heart rates can no longer sustain life.
Benzodiazepines are frequently abused with other drugs, commonly with alcohol and opioids, both of which are also central nervous system depressants. This combination makes benzodiazepines even more dangerous and deadly.
Signs of overdose from benzodiazepines include blue fingernails, double vision, impaired coordination, slurred speech, and slowed or stopped breathing, among others.
An overdose is a medical emergency. If an overdose is suspected, contact emergency medical support services immediately.
Find Treatment For A Benzodiazepine Addiction
Benzodiazepine addiction is serious, and treatment often requires a medically-supervised detoxification program prior to drug rehabilitation.
The behavioral and mental impacts of addiction run deep, and this combination of factors often requires more intensive care. Inpatient drug rehab programs are designed to meet these needs, by a combination of psychotherapies and evidenced-based treatment methods.
Written by Addiction Campuses Editorial Team
Etizolam vs. Xanax: What’s the Difference? What You Need to Know
The effects and chemical structures of Etizolam and Xanax are very similar, but there are some differences. They are bothcentral nervous system (CNS) depressants that are used to treat anxiety and panic disorders. They also have sedative qualities and can be used as sleep aids, but they may cause daytime drowsiness. They can also cause intoxication that’s similar to alcohol, including loss of motor control, memory loss, the release of inhibitions, slurred speech, and respiratory depression.
But with so many similarities, how do they differ? Here are some of the most significant differences between etizolam and Xanax:
The two drugs work in the brain in very similar ways, but they’re actually in different chemical classes. Xanax is abenzodiazepine, which has a chemical structure that involves a benzene ring touching a diazepine ring. Other drugs in this class are Valium and Ativan.
Etizolam also has benzene and diazepine rings, but they aren’t touching. Where the benzene ring resides in a benzodiazepine, there’s another structure called a thiophene ring. This difference puts etizolam in a category called thienotriazolodiazepine.
In the United States, Xanax is classified as a Schedule IV substance by the federal government. In other words, it has a low potential for abuse, and it’s currently accepted as a medical use in the United States. It’s also considered to have a low risk of physical and psychological dependence if it’s abused.
However, benzodiazepines do have a significant risk of physical dependence and abuse. Still, it’s considered to be limited compared to more addictive drugs that are more strictly scheduled. It can be obtained with a prescription, but otherwise, it’s illegal to buy and sell it without authorization.
Etizolam is not approved for medical use in the U.S., though it is commonly prescribed in Japan and some European countries. From a federal standpoint, the drug isn’t scheduled, but it’s considered a Schedule I drug in some states, which means it’s illegal to buy or sell it.
However, the legal ambiguity of the drug in the U.S. allows it to be sold on the grey market, which is the name for the market in which substances are sold by circumventing existing drug laws. According to the DEA, Etizolam can be bought online or in stores if it’s labeled as a “research chemical.”
EFFECTS AND MEDICAL USES
Xanax and etizolam have similar effects, and both can cause anxiolysis (anxiety relief), hypnosis, sedation, and anticonvulsant effects. However, Xanax is most commonly prescribed as a remedy for anxiety and panic disorders. In some cases, it can be used to treat seizures.
Etizolam has a wide variety of uses outside of the U.S. In low and common doses, it most commonly affects anxiolysis, but sedation and hypnosis can be more common in higher doses. In Japan, it’s marketed as a treatment for anxiety, pain, depression, sleep disorders, and even headaches.
WHY IS ETIZOLAM USED?
Most people have heard of Xanax, but etizolam is less common. But the two drugs are used for many of the same medical treatments. Etizolam is primarily used to treat insomnia and anxiety disorders, and it’s especially good at relieving anxiety. But it’s less likely to have hypnotic effects. In higher doses, it can cause hypnosis, sedation, loss of motor control, and other effects consistent with sleep aids. On the other hand, Xanax is primarily used to treat anxiety and panic disorders, and other medications are typically used if a sleep disorder is involved.
Xanax has a longer duration of action, which can drowsiness the next day if it’s used as a sleep aid. Etizolam has a similar half-life, and it will be reduced to half of the original concentration in your blood after six hours. However, its effects peak at three hours and start to wane after that. Still, it may cause next-day drowsiness with a high enough dose.
Whether it’s used for insomnia or anxiety, etizolam is intended for short-term use. Like Xanax, the prolonged, consistent use of the drug can cause chemical dependence and addiction. If you keep using the drug, your brain will start adapting to its presence and integrate it into your normal brain chemistry.
Furthermore, it may stop producing its own inhibitory chemicals, and it may even produce excitatory chemicals to counteract the drug and balance your brain chemistry. For that reason, both etizolam and Xanax are used as a temporary therapeutic treatment.
While etizolam is used in Japan and parts of Europe, it’s not approved for use by the Food and Drug Administration in the U.S., but it is legal in a few states. It’s considered a Schedule I drug, due to its likelihood to be abused.
HOW MUCH ETIZOLAM IS EQUAL TO XANAX?
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Etizolam is active at a very low dose: about 0.2 to 0.5 milligrams. Using even half a milligram more than necessary can have considerably boosted effects. A common clinical dose is around 0.5 to 2.0 milligrams per day, depending on the individual patient, the means of administration, and the intended use.
According to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, etizolam is aboutten times more potent than diazepam (Valium). Xanax is prescribed at similar levels, though starting doses will usually be slightly smaller for the treatment of anxiety. In medical settings, Xanax can be prescribed at much higher doses, especially for severe panic disorders and seizures.
Using a high dose of either drug is more likely to cause dangerous side effects, such as memory loss, a lack of inhibitions, or respiratory depression. Very high doses can be dangerous, as respiratory depression can slow or stop breathing to the point of oxygen deprivation, brain damage, coma, and death.
It’s worth noting that doses of similar strengths may not produce the same effects. They’re different drugs, and they may have different effects on the brain and body, even at equally strong doses.
If the two substances are combined, they can potentiate each other, which means they can work together to compound their effects.
This impact can increase your likelihood of experiencing memory loss, heavy sedation, respiratory depression, and even death. Many of thefatal cases of Xanax and etizolam overdoses involve other CNS depressants such as benzodiazepines, opioids, oralcohol.
Seeking Addiction Treatment
Is your loved one struggling with etizolam abuse or addiction? Are you? If so, it’s important for you to treat it with the seriousness it requires and get help before it’s too late.