Does Ativan Cause or Help Heart Palpitations?

In this article, we will take a look at Ativan, also known as lorazepam. We will discuss its potential effects on heart palpitations. We will alsolook into the studies conducted on benzodiazepines and their impact on heart rate and rhythm.
Jakub Gwiazdecki

Jakub Gwiazdecki

Fifth year medical student at the Medical Faculty of Comenius University in Bratislava.

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Does Ativan Cause or Help Heart Palpitation?

Ativan or lorazepam is used mostly in the treatment of anxiety disorders. Ativan can help with heart palpitations which come from psychological disorders, but in other cases the impact is not studied well. However, benzodiazepines, the medication class to which Ativan belongs, have been studied for their effects on the heart.

For instance, clonazepam was found to be associated with clinical and psych-vegetative improvement. It positively changes the autonomic tone in patients with paroxysmal atrial fibrillation (PAF) [1].

Alprazolam, a benzodiazepine also known as Xanax, can have a good influence on the heart in emergency cases. It can lower the risk of ventricular fibrillation following a heart attack. This arrhythmia can occur after reperfusion therapy. However, alprazolam effects are dependant on the dose [1].

However, some people have reported heart palpitations caused by Xanax.

The impact of other benzodiazepines on the heart is mixed. Diazepam can cause some patients to experience an increase in atrioventricular block [1]. On the other hand, it showed a significant increase in atrioventricular node conduction as well as sinus cycle shortening [1].

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Jakub Gwiazdecki

Jakub Gwiazdecki

Jakub is in his fifth year as a medical student at Comenius University in Bratislava, Slovakia. He has special interested in cardiology and in patient-centered medicine. His love for heart health isn't just book-smarts; he wants to know how it works, what it means for our feelings, and how key it is for health and happiness. Jakub thinks real good health care comes from always putting the patient at the centre, treating each person as a whole.