A drug may be classified by the chemical type of the active ingredient or by the way it is used to treat a particular condition. Each drug can be classified into one or more drug classes.
Benzodiazepines are a class of agents that work on the central nervous system, acting selectively on gamma-aminobutyric acid-A (GABA-A) receptors in the brain. It enhances response to the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, by opening GABA-activated chloride channels and allowing chloride ions to enter the neuron, making the neuron negatively charged and resistant to excitation.
Benzodiazepines are similar in pharmacological action but have different potencies, and some benzodiazepine work better in treatment of particular conditions. Benzodiazepines are used as sedatives, hypnotics, anxiolytics, anticonvulsants and muscle relaxants.
Drugs.com provides accurate and independent information on more than 24,000 prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines and natural products. This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Data sources include Micromedex® (updated Oct 30th, 2014), Cerner Multum™ (updated Nov 17th, 2014), Wolters Kluwer™ (updated Nov 3rd, 2014) and others. To view content sources and attributions, refer to our editorial policy.