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Electronic In-Hospital Prescribing: Trouble for Older Adults?

Posted 5 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 29, 2016 – Preprogrammed doses of medications that can raise the risk of falls are often set too high for older hospital patients, new research shows. In the study, doctors looked at the records of 287 patients over the age of 65 who fell while staying in a large urban hospital. Some patients fell more than once, adding to a total of 328 falls in the study. Of those falls, 62 percent occurred in patients who had been given at least one high-risk medication in the 24 hours before their fall. Of that 62 percent, 16 percent had been given two high-risk medicines, while another 16 percent had been given three or more. And 41 percent of the medications studied were electronically set at doses that were greater than recommended for older patients. The 29 medicines examined included opioid painkillers such as OxyContin and Percocet, sleeping pills, muscle relaxants and ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Oxycodone, Hydrocodone, Methadone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Klonopin, Fentanyl, Clonazepam, Morphine, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Codeine, Opana, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Subutex, Dilaudid

Health Tip: Selecting a Sleep Mask

Posted 3 May 2016 by Drugs.com

-- Bright light can interrupt sleep quickly, so many people use a sleep mask. The National Sleep Foundation suggests how to choose the right one: Consider whether you need a sleep mask that provides total blackout, or one that provides darker conditions in a room that's already fairly dark. Look for a mask that fits across the bridge of the nose. Invest in a quality mask with a nose flap to help block more light and provide a better fit. Opt for a mask with cavities that alleviate pressure around your eyes. Find the right fabric that feels comfortable, is easy to wash and doesn't trigger allergies. Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Sleep Disorders, Klonopin, Insomnia, Clonazepam, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Fatigue, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, BuSpar, Diazepam, Benadryl, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam, Nightmares

Desperate for Shut-Eye?

Posted 3 May 2016 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, May 2, 2016 – People with long-term sleep troubles should turn to a form of psychotherapy to reboot normal sleeping patterns before trying sleeping pills, the American College of Physicians recommends. Specifically, people with chronic insomnia should try cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), the experts said. This treatment combines talk therapy, behavioral interventions and education. If CBT doesn't work, patients and their doctors should then decide together whether to add drug therapy, the new guidelines said. "We know chronic insomnia is a real problem that patients present within our [doctors'] offices," said Dr. Wayne Riley, president of the American College of Physicians (ACP). "We want to get away from the overtendency to prescribe sleep medications, and clearly CBT can be a very nice tool in the toolkit." Up to 10 percent of adults are affected by insomnia, defined as ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Sleep Disorders, Klonopin, Insomnia, Clonazepam, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Fatigue, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, BuSpar, Diazepam, Benadryl, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam, Nightmares

Sleeping Pills May Spell Trouble for Older Drivers

Posted 25 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 25, 2016 – Older drivers who use the sleeping pill zolpidem, sold widely as Ambien, may have a higher risk of motor vehicle crashes, a new study suggests. Researchers evaluated the five-year driving records of 2,000 Alabama residents, aged 70 and older, comparing those who used the sleeping pill to those who did not. Women who used Ambien had a 61 percent higher probability of a crash over five years compared to nonusers, the study found. "The risk was over twofold [higher] for all drivers over 80," said senior study author Gerald McGwin, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. But the current study was only designed to find an association between car accidents and sleeping pill use. "We haven't demonstrated a cause and effect," McGwin said. Still, the link is concerning, he said, and doctors and patients should pay more attention to how ... Read more

Related support groups: Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Ambien, Fatigue, Zolpidem, Ambien CR, Intermezzo, Edluar, Zolpimist

Tribal Study Finds Short Sleep Not Just Curse of Modern Living

Posted 15 Oct 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Oct. 15, 2015 – Fast-paced urban lifestyles may not be to blame for the lack of sleep that plagues many people today, a new study shows. Researchers tracked the sleep habits of three traditional hunter-gatherer groups in Bolivia, Namibia and Tanzania, and found their sleep timing and duration to be similar to those of more "modern" people. The finding "has important implications for the idea that we need to take sleeping pills because sleep has been reduced from its 'natural level' by the widespread use of electricity, TV, the Internet and so on," researcher Jerome Siegel of the University of California, Los Angeles, said in a news release from the journal Current Biology. His team published its findings in the Oct. 15 issue of the journal. In the study, Siegel's team followed the sleep habits of 94 people from three hunter-gatherer tribes across different parts of the world: ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Sleep Disorders, Klonopin, Insomnia, Clonazepam, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Fatigue, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, BuSpar, Diazepam, Benadryl, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam, Diphenhydramine

Car Crash Risk Doubles for New Users of Sleeping Pills, Study Finds

Posted 11 Jun 2015 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, June 11, 2015 – Sedative sleeping pills such as Ambien can nearly double the risk for car accidents among new users compared with nonusers, new research suggests. University of Washington researchers found an increased risk for crashes for people taking Restoril (temazepam), Desyrel (trazodone) or Ambien (zolpidem). That risk continued for up to a year among regular users, according to the study. "Risks associated with sleeping pills have been known for some time, though this study shows some compelling real-world consequences," said Michael Grandner, an instructor in psychiatry at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, who had no involvement with the study. Doctors, pharmacists and patients should discuss this potential risk when selecting a sleep medication, the researchers said. Concerns about Ambien have increased in recent years. To cut down on hazards linked to ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Sleep Disorders, Klonopin, Insomnia, Clonazepam, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Fatigue, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, BuSpar, Diazepam, Benadryl, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam, Diphenhydramine

Teens Given Anxiety, Sleep Meds May Be at Risk for Drug Abuse

Posted 25 Nov 2014 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 25, 2014 – Teens prescribed anti-anxiety or sleep medications are much more likely to abuse those drugs than other teens, a new study warns. The findings show the need to conduct substance abuse assessments on teenagers before prescribing these drugs to them, the researchers said. "Prescribers and parents don't realize the abuse potential," said lead researcher Carol Boyd, a professor at the University of Michigan School of Nursing. "These drugs produce highly attractive sensations, and adolescents may start seeking the drugs after their prescriptions run out." The three-year study of more than 2,700 middle and high school students in the Detroit area found that nearly 9 percent had, at some point, been prescribed a potentially addictive anti-anxiety medication, such as Xanax, Valium or Klonopin, or a sleep medication, such as Ambien, Lunesta or Restoril. More than 3 ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ambien, Valium, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Zolpidem, Temazepam, Lunesta, Restoril, Xanax XR, Ambien CR, Substance Abuse, Klonopin Wafer, Eszopiclone, Alprazolam Intensol, Niravam, Intermezzo, Edluar

Study Finds Doctors Prescribing More Sedatives

Posted 7 Mar 2014 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, March 7, 2014 – Doctors in the United States are writing more prescriptions for sedatives than ever before, and the frequent use of these powerful drugs in combination with narcotic painkillers may be causing medication-related deaths, a new study suggests. Sedatives are used to treat problems such as anxiety, mood disorders and insomnia, and include drugs such as Valium, Halcion, Xanax, Ativan and Librium. For the study, researchers looked at 3.1 billion primary care visits made by Americans between 2002 and 2009, and found that 12.6 percent of those visits involved prescriptions for sedatives (benzodiazepines) or narcotic (opioid) painkillers. They also found that the number of prescriptions for sedatives increased 12.5 percent a year. Patients who received narcotic painkiller prescriptions were 4.2 times more likely to also have sedative prescriptions, and the number of ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, BuSpar, Diazepam, Benadryl, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam, Diphenhydramine, Lunesta, Vistaril, Doxepin

Prescription Sleep Aids a Common Choice for American Insomnia

Posted 29 Aug 2013 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Aug. 29 – About 4 percent of American adults – more than 8.5 million people – have used a prescription sleep aid in the past month, and the use increases with age, U.S. health officials reported Thursday. In addition, more women (5 percent) than men (3.1 percent) over the age of 20 take these drugs, and those with higher education levels are more likely to use them, the researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found. "This is the first time we have a national estimate on how many people are taking prescription medications for sleep," said report coauthor Yinong Chong, an epidemiologist at the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics. In the past 20 years, there has been reports of an increased number of prescriptions for sleep aids in the United States. But, Chong said, the use of such drugs has remained stable in the past decade, rising about ... Read more

Related support groups: Insomnia, Ambien, Zolpidem, Temazepam, Lunesta, Restoril, Ambien CR, Halcion, Triazolam, Sonata, Rozerem, Dalmane, Zaleplon, Eszopiclone, Flurazepam, Intermezzo, Chloral Hydrate, Prosom, Somnote, Edluar

FDA: Lower Ambien's Dose to Prevent Drowsy Driving

Posted 15 May 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 15 – The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved new, lower-dose labeling for the popular sleep drug Ambien (zolpidem) in an effort to cut down on daytime drowsiness that could be a hazard while performing certain tasks such as driving. The move follows the FDA's request to manufacturers in January that drugs containing zolpidem carry instructions that lower the recommended dose and provide more safety information to patients. "FDA has approved these changes because of the known risk of next-morning impairment with these drugs," the agency said in a statement released Tuesday on its website. Sleep medications containing zolpidem include Ambien, Ambien CR, Edluar and Zolpimist, as well as generic versions of Ambien and Ambien CR. "The purpose of the lowering is to help decrease the risk of next-morning impairment of activities that require alertness," Dr. Ellis ... Read more

Related support groups: Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Ambien, Zolpidem, Ambien CR, Intermezzo, Edluar, Zolpimist

FDA Medwatch Alert: Zolpidem Containing Products: Drug Safety Communication - FDA Requires Lower Recommended Doses

Posted 14 May 2013 by Drugs.com

Including Ambien, Ambien CR, Edluar, and Zolpimist  [UPDATE 05/14/2013] Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is notifying the public that FDA has approved label changes specifying new dosing recommendations for zolpidem products (Ambien, Ambien CR, and Edluar), which are widely prescribed sleep medications. FDA has approved these changes because of the known risk of next-morning impairment with these drugs. [Posted 01/10/2013] ISSUE: FDA is notifying the public of new information about zolpidem, a widely prescribed insomnia drug. FDA recommends that the bedtime dose be lowered because new data show that blood levels in some patients may be high enough the morning after use to impair activities that require alertness, including driving. This announcement focuses on zolpidem products approved for bedtime use, which are marketed as generics and under the brand names Ambien, ... Read more

Related support groups: Insomnia, Ambien, Zolpidem, Ambien CR, Intermezzo, Edluar, Zolpimist

ER Visits Tied to Ambien on the Rise

Posted 1 May 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, May 1 – There has been a dramatic increase in the number of emergency-room visits related to sleep medications such as Ambien, according to a new U.S. study. Adverse reactions to zolpidem – the active ingredient in the sleep aids Ambien, Ambien CR, Edluar and Zolpimist – rose almost 220 percent between 2005 and 2010, researchers from the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) found. The study authors concluded that use of these drugs for the short-term treatment of insomnia should be carefully monitored. Zolpidem, which has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, has been used safely and effectively by millions of Americans, but adverse reactions to the medication have increased. Most of these cases involved people aged 45 and older, the researchers said. "Although short-term sleeping medications can help patients, it is ... Read more

Related support groups: Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Ambien, Zolpidem, Ambien CR, Substance Abuse, Intermezzo, Edluar, Zolpimist

Is a Better Sleeping Pill on the Way?

Posted 3 Apr 2013 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, April 3 – A new class of sleep medications appears to help people fall asleep without causing grogginess the next day, researchers say. These new medications – known as dual orexin receptor antagonists (DORA) – target a more specific region of the brain than popular sleep drugs such as Ambien and Lunesta, promoting sleep without affecting learning and memory (also called "cognition"), according to the new research. "We've shown that these compounds improve sleep at doses that don't impact cognition," said Jason Uslaner, lead author of a study published in the April 3 issue of Science Translational Medicine. Uslaner is director of In Vivo Pharmacology at Merck & Co., which funded the study. Merck already has one such drug, suvorexant, under review by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). More than 30 million Americans struggle to get a good night's sleep, and about ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Ambien, Valium, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, BuSpar, Diazepam, Benadryl, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam, Diphenhydramine, Lunesta, Vistaril, Doxepin

Certain Sleep Aids May Raise Hip Fracture Risk in Nursing Homes: Study

Posted 4 Mar 2013 by Drugs.com

MONDAY, March 4 – Health staff at nursing homes often give patients sleeping pills to help them sleep, but a new study suggests that a certain class of medications may put patients at raised risk for hip fractures. A team from Harvard Medical School in Boston looked at more than 15,500 long-stay nursing-home residents, aged 50 and older, who suffered a hip fracture between July 2007 and December 2008. The residents' average age was 81. About 1,700 of the residents had been given a nonbenzodiazepine hypnotic sleep drug before their hip fracture. This class of drugs includes Lunesta, Sonata, Ambien and Intermezzo. Those who took nonbenzodiazepine hypnotic sleep drugs were about two-thirds more likely to suffer a hip fracture than those who didn't take the drugs, according to the study, published online March 4 in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine. Although the study found an association ... Read more

Related support groups: Sleep Disorders, Insomnia, Ambien, Zolpidem, Lunesta, Fracture, Ambien CR, Sonata, Eszopiclone, Zaleplon, Intermezzo, Edluar, Zolpimist

FDA Medwatch Alert: Zolpidem Containing Products: Drug Safety Communication - FDA Requires Lower Recommended Doses

Posted 11 Jan 2013 by Drugs.com

Including Ambien, Ambien CR, Edluar, and Zolpimist    [Posted 01/10/2013] ISSUE: FDA is notifying the public of new information about zolpidem, a widely prescribed insomnia drug. FDA recommends that the bedtime dose be lowered because new data show that blood levels in some patients may be high enough the morning after use to impair activities that require alertness, including driving. This announcement focuses on zolpidem products approved for bedtime use, which are marketed as generics and under the brand names Ambien, Ambien CR, Edluar, and Zolpimist. FDA is also reminding the public that all drugs taken for insomnia can impair driving and activities that require alertness the morning after use. Drowsiness is already listed as a common side effect in the drug labels of all insomnia drugs, along with warnings that patients may still feel drowsy the day after taking these products. P ... Read more

Related support groups: Insomnia, Ambien, Zolpidem, Ambien CR, Intermezzo, Edluar, Zolpimist

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