Effects of clonidine on alprazolam discontinuation in panic patients: A pilot study

Abby J. Fyer, Michael R. Liebowitz, Jack M. Gorman, Campeas Raphael, Levin Andrew, Sandberg Diana, Fyer Minna, Hollander Eric, Papp Laszlo, Deborah Goetz, Donald F. Klein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Effects of adjunctive clonidine (0.15 to 0.7 mg/ day) on symptoms experienced during and for 4 weeks after gradual alprazolam discontinuation were observed in panic disorder patients after 6 weeks of successful treatment. Twelve of 14 entered patients were considered to have had a sufficient period of discontinuation (2 weeks) and clonidine administration (1 week) for effects to be assessed adequately. Nine of these 12 patients reached zero dose of alprazolam in 3 to 4 weeks. However, 10 of 12 patients experienced new withdrawal symptoms and 11 of 12 experienced recurrent panic attacks during tapering. Although a greater proportion of patients were successfully discontinued in a shorter time than in a previous nonclonidine trial, clonidine did not appear to have a specific effect on relapse or withdrawal. A placebo-controlled trial is needed to discriminate between possible contributions of clonidine and other factors (e.g., physician attitude, placebo effect of pi11 taking) to this improved outcome.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)270-274
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Clinical Psychopharmacology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1988
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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