Medications prescribed for tinnitus are alprazolam and nortriptyline, according to Drugs.com. Alprazolam is a benzodiazepine that is primarily used to treat anxiety and panic disorders. Nortriptyline is a tricyclic antidepressant, according to MedlinePlus. Like alprazolam, it is also used to treat anxiety disorders.
Alprazolam can become habit forming, says Drugs.com. Because of this, it should not be taken by women who are pregnant, for the baby can become addicted in the womb and suffer withdrawal after birth. A woman who takes alprazolam should also not breast-feed because the drug passes into the milk. Other patients who should not take alprazolam are people who suffer from narrow-angle glaucoma, know that they are allergic to the drug and who are also on itraconazole or ketoconazole. People with seizure disorders, kidney or liver disease, asthma, open-angle glaucoma and other pre-existing conditions should tell their doctor before they start taking alprazolam.
Nortriptyline also comes with risks, according to MedlinePlus. It can cause suicidal thoughts in younger users and also causes side effects such as nausea, fatigue and weakness, nightmares, constipation, problems with urination, and anxiety. Side effects also include changes in sexual functioning and hyperhidrosis. Nortriptyline has also been implicated in causing closed-angle glaucoma. Symptoms such as rash, jaundice, fever, irregular heartbeat and spasms of the neck, jaw or back muscles are considered medical emergencies, and a doctor needs to be called.