Which medications in the drug class Anticonvulsants, Other are used in the treatment of Cyanide Toxicity?

Updated: May 30, 2020
  • Author: Inna Leybell, MD; Chief Editor: Michael A Miller, MD  more...
  • Print

Anticonvulsants, Other

Cyanide inhibits brain glutamate decarboxylase, which causes a decrease in the inhibitory neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) and contributes to convulsions. Therefore, anticonvulsant drugs such as benzodiazepines or barbiturates, which act at the GABA receptor complex, can help control seizures.

Lorazepam (Ativan)

Lorazepam is the drug of choice for cyanide-induced seizures. It is a sedative hypnotic with a rapid onset of effect and a relatively long half-life. By increasing the action of GABA, a major inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain, lorazepam may depress all levels of the central nervous system, including the limbic and reticular formation.

Pentobarbital (Nembutal)

Pentobarbital is a short-acting barbiturate that interferes with transmission of impulses from the thalamus to the cortex. It has sedative, hypnotic, and anticonvulsant properties. It is a second-line drug for treatment of drug-induced seizures.

Did this answer your question?
Additional feedback? (Optional)
Thank you for your feedback!