Benzodiazepine Withdrawal Syndrome: Presentations and Emergency Department Management – emDOCs.net – Emergency Medicine Education

Prescription benzodiazepines continue to be commonly prescribed drugs for treatment of mood and anxiety disorders. In 2015, more than 32 million people over the age of 12 reported use of benzodiazepines in the previous year. Of these, nearly 20% used benzodiazepines in a pattern of misuse (Figure 1).1 Benzodiazepines also ranked second among misused/abused drug related visits to the ED by patients aged 65 and older in 2011.2 The rates of long term benzodiazepine use have steadily increased over time. A retrospective study showed an age-related increase in the percentage of benzodiazepine use with higher rates of any benzodiazepine use in women at any age.3 Most of the patients with long term benzodiazepine use received their prescriptions from prescribers who were not psychiatrists.4 Benzodiazepine dependence can be seen within just 3-6 weeks of regular use at therapeutic doses.3

Source: emDOCs.net – Emergency Medicine EducationBenzodiazepine Withdrawal Syndrome: Presentations and Emergency Department Management – emDOCs.net – Emergency Medicine Education

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Physicians are being murdered for not prescribing opioids

I would like to suggest that the root of this opioid epidemic lies far deeper than “physicians overprescribing.” The problem is that we are now a society of adults who have no coping skills. No ability to deal with the curves that life throws us. Everyone is looking for a quick fix. We have taught our children that they should never have to feel any sort of discomfort whether emotional or physical.

Source: Physicians are being murdered for not prescribing opioids

I’ve been concerned about the lack of coping skills for quite some time.

Then I read this:

The number of Americans who say they’ve taken an antidepressant over the past month rose by 65 percent between 1999 and 2014, a new government survey finds.

Source: Antidepressant Use Jumps 65 Percent in 15 Years

This is depressing.

Trends in Prescription Opioids Detected in Fatally Injured Drivers in 6 US States: 1995–2015 | AJPH | Ahead of Print

Results. The prevalence of prescription opioids detected in fatally injured drivers increased from 1.0% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.5, 1.4) in 1995 to 7.2% (95% CI = 5.7, 8.8) in 2015 (Z = −9.04; P < .001). Prescription opioid prevalence was higher in female than in male drivers (4.4% vs 2.9%; P < .001). Of the drivers testing positive for prescription opioids, 30.0% had elevated blood alcohol concentrations (≥ 0.01 g/dL), and 66.9% tested positive for other drugs.

Source: Trends in Prescription Opioids Detected in Fatally Injured Drivers in 6 US States: 1995–2015 | AJPH | Ahead of Print

Houston…we have a problem.