Use and abuse of benzodiazepines

R. R. Griffiths, K. Kelemen, M. Lader

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Benzodiazepines are widely used for the treatment of anxiety, insomnia, and certain neuromuscular and convulsive disorders. However, their widespread availability has given rise to fears that they are over-prescribed. The problem is compounded by the fact that there is no universal agreement among medical practitioners as to the clinical indications warranting the use of these drugs. Although most industrialized countries exercise control over the sale and manufacture of benzodiazepine, many developing countries do not have sufficient control of these drugs. As a result, information on drug utilization and associated problems is difficult to obtain and there is a lack of comparative data on drug consumption in different countries. The present article describes the current knowledge on the pharmacological, clinical, and epidemiological characteristics of benzodiazepines, and the problems associated with their use, and indicates areas where more research is needed. Recommendations are made for future work.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)551-562
Number of pages12
JournalBulletin of the World Health Organization
Volume61
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 4 1983

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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