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XANAX® XR, CIV Use in Specific Populations (alprazolam)


8.1 Pregnancy

Pregnancy Exposure Registry

There is a pregnancy exposure registry that monitors pregnancy outcomes in women exposed to XANAX XR during pregnancy. Healthcare providers are encouraged to register patients by calling the National Pregnancy Registry for Other Psychiatric Medications at 1-866-961-2388 or visiting online at

Risk Summary

Neonates born to mothers using benzodiazepines during the later stages of pregnancy have been reported to experience symptoms of sedation and neonatal withdrawal [see Warnings and Precautions (5.4), Clinical Considerations)]. Overall available data from published observational studies of pregnant women exposed to alprazolam have not established a drug-associated risk of major birth defects, miscarriage, or adverse maternal or fetal outcomes (see Data).

The estimated background risk of major birth defects and miscarriage for the indicated population is unknown. All pregnancies have a background risk of birth defect, loss, or other adverse outcomes. In the U.S. general population, the estimated risk of major birth defects and of miscarriage in clinically recognized pregnancies is 2% to 4% and 15% to 20%, respectively.

Clinical Considerations

Fetal/Neonatal adverse reactions

Benzodiazepines cross the placenta and may produce respiratory depression and sedation in neonates. Monitor neonates exposed to benzodiazepines during pregnancy and labor for signs of sedation, respiratory depression, withdrawal, and feeding problems and manage accordingly [see Warnings and Precautions (5.4)].


Human Data

Published data from observational studies on the use of benzodiazepines during pregnancy do not report a clear association with benzodiazepines and major birth defects. Although early studies reported an increased risk of congenital malformations with diazepam and chlordiazepoxide, there was no consistent pattern noted. In addition, the majority of recent case-control and cohort studies of benzodiazepine use during pregnancy, which were adjusted for confounding exposures to alcohol, tobacco, and other medications, have not confirmed these findings. At this time, there is no clear evidence that alprazolam exposure in early pregnancy can cause major birth defects. Neonates exposed to benzodiazepines during the late third trimester of pregnancy or during labor have been reported to exhibit sedation and neonatal withdrawal symptoms.

8.2 Lactation

Risk Summary

Limited data from published literature reports the presence of alprazolam in human breast milk. There are reports of sedation and withdrawal symptoms in breastfed neonates and infants exposed to alprazolam. The effects of alprazolam on lactation are unknown. Because of the potential for serious adverse reactions, including sedation and withdrawal symptoms in breastfed neonates and infants, advise patients that breastfeeding is not recommended during treatment with XANAX XR.

8.4 Pediatric Use

Safety and effectiveness of XANAX XR have not been established in pediatric patients.

8.5 Geriatric Use

XANAX XR-treated geriatric patients had higher plasma concentrations of alprazolam (due to reduced clearance) compared to younger adults receiving the same doses. Therefore, dosage reduction of XANAX XR is recommended in geriatric patients [see Dosage and Administration (2.3) and Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

8.6 Hepatic Impairment

Patients with alcoholic liver disease exhibit a longer elimination half-life (19.7 hours), compared to healthy subjects (11.4 hours). This may be caused by decreased clearance of alprazolam in patients with alcoholic liver disease. Dosage reduction of XANAX XR is recommended in patients with hepatic impairment [see Dosage and Administration (2.4), Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

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