This piece began in response to a comment on my May 28 post and is co-written with Susan BA©langer, a member of the History of Medicine Program of the University of Toronto A reader questioned our comments on the disappearance of the benzodiazepines, given that this drug class still accounts for 3 of the top 10 most commonly prescribed ... (more)
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#1 Jun 13, 2013
"But the main point is that in the U.S. and Britain this drug class became demonized as addictive. In 1975 the US Department of Justice placed Librium and Valium on schedule IV of its list of controlled substances. Being listed as potential drugs of abuse had a chilling effect on prescribing."
*demonized as addictive*?
There is a very good reason for the hysteria and to state that these drugs are DEMONIZED AS ADDICTIVE is to make light of the fact that these drugs are, indeed, ADDICTIVE! Why is that so hard to understand? The very nature of addiction is such that, sooner or later, they will STOP WORKING and tolerance sets in, then the patient needs MORE to get the 'therapeutic' effect.
Furthermore, these drugs are near impossible to get off of, unless one is doing a slow taper at no more than a 10% cut every two weeks.
Why is that? the withdrawals are horrendous. People do believe they are going insane trying to get off these drugs and they will experience all sorts of withdrawal symptoms.
But MOST IMPORTANTLY - Untold numbers of people have DIED when cold turkeyed off these drugs, as they experience hallucinations, they experience SEIZURES, COMA and yes, sometimes death.
SUDDEN DEATH is quite a good reason to demonize these drugs, don't you think? I, myself, can't think of a BETTER REASON to DEMONIZE A DRUG!
And as for this statement:
"The benzos are among the safest and most effective drug classes in the history of psychopharmacology; the SSRI “antidepressants,” a less effective drug class, elbowed them off the roller rink. This is worth knowing."
**NOTHING** COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH!
For, first of all, we have the 'sudden death' of people on benzos who are cold turkeyed, OR we have people being prescribed deadly anitpsychotic drugs in order to "treat" the *symptoms* of benzo addiction...
...when in reality all they really need is to go off the addictive drug!
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