Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver that can be contracted in various ways. Some types of hepatitis are caused by infections. Others develop and intensify due to the consumption of harmful substances. Alcohol is possibly the most famous culprit, but a drug that may not seem at first like a hepatitis threat is the benzodiazepine alprazolam, which is also known by the brand name Xanax. The misuse of Xanax due to anxiety or a recreational desire to relax is well documented. Alprazolam abuse can affect the liver and is connected to the development of hepatitis in users.
Alprazolam Interactions with the Liver
One must keep in mind that Xanax abuse is not nearly as dangerous to one’s liver health as alcoholism is. Still, all bodies are different and will react to different drugs in various ways. An overabundance of Xanax in the body destroys liver cells, causing the user’s liver enzyme levels to rise slightly above normal. However, alprazolam alone is still unlikely to cause hepatitis. The real danger is the introduction of Xanax to a liver that is already diseased. A hepatitis-ridden liver is less able to process toxic chemicals from the bloodstream in the way that it needs to and is more susceptible to damage. Even if hepatitis is contracted virally, the liver will still be in a critically weakened state when alprazolam enters it. The debilitated state of the liver keeps the drug from being disposed of as quickly as normal. Thus, if the user is addicted, Xanax will build up in the user’s system and multiply the likelihood of overdose and further liver damage.
Consequences of Alprazolam Overdose
Because Xanax is a depressant, many of the symptoms of overdose are heightened versions of the following effects of normal use:
- Slowed breathing
- Slowed heart rate
Not all of these sound severe, but when they manifest at a time when the user should reasonably be awake and alert, emergency help should be sought in case the user is indeed experiencing an overdose. Because of the stronger effect of alprazolam on a body with a weakened liver, death by overdose is much more of a possibility for a user with hepatitis than it would normally be.
Recovery Help for Alprazolam Addiction and Hepatitis Complications
If you or a loved one suffers from alprazolam addiction, please call our toll-free helpline today. Treating the disorder before hepatitis or any other complication sets in is the ideal recovery scenario, but if such an illness has already developed, our counselors can recommend programs that specialize in treating drug users with special medical needs. In addiction treatment, users are given adequate medical care while their addiction is gently and definitively addressed. We are available 24 hours a day, so let us help you find recovery today.