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FDA Medwatch Alert: Opioid Pain or Cough Medicines Combined With Benzodiazepines: Drug Safety Communication - FDA Requiring New Boxed Warnings About Serious Risks and Death

Posted 5 Sep 2016 by Drugs.com

ISSUE: FDA review has found that the growing combined use of opioid medicines with benzodiazepines or other drugs that depress the central nervous system (CNS) has resulted in serious side effects, including slowed or difficult breathing and deaths.  Opioids are used to treat pain and cough; benzodiazepines are used to treat anxiety, insomnia, and seizures. In an effort to decrease the use of opioids and benzodiazepines, or opioids and other CNS depressants, together, FDA is adding Boxed Warnings, our strongest warnings, to the drug labeling of prescription opioid pain and prescription opioid cough medicines, and benzodiazepines. See the Drug Safety Communication for a listing of all approved prescription opioid pain and cough medicines, and benzodiazepines and other CNS depressants. FDA conducted and reviewed several studies showing that serious risks are associated with the combined ... Read more

Related support groups: Pain, Anxiety, Xanax, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Klonopin, Vicodin, Norco, Cough, Fentanyl, Clonazepam, Morphine, Ativan, Valium, Codeine

FDA: Opioids Plus Sedatives Pose Fatal OD Risk

Posted 31 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 31, 2016 – Mixing prescription opioid painkillers with a class of drugs that includes popular sedatives such as Valium and Xanax can cause a fatal overdose, U.S. health officials warned Wednesday. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said it will require "boxed warnings" on 389 different products to inform health professionals and the public of this potentially lethal drug interaction, FDA Commissioner Dr. Robert Califf said during a media briefing. Benzodiazepines – which include Valium and Xanax – affect the central nervous system, and are used to treat conditions like anxiety, insomnia and seizures, said Dr. Doug Throckmorton, deputy director of regulatory programs with the FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. If benzodiazepines are combined with opioid medications such as oxycodone (Oxycontin) and hydrocodone (Vicodin), a drug interaction can occur that ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Klonopin, Vicodin, Norco, Opiate Dependence, Fentanyl, Clonazepam, Morphine, Ativan, Valium, Codeine, Lortab, Opiate Withdrawal, Opana

iPads Calm Surgery-Bound Kids as Well as Sedatives

Posted 30 Aug 2016 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Aug. 30, 2016 – Savvy parents probably already suspect it: iPads work as well as sedative drugs to calm anxious kids before surgery, a new study shows. Researchers assessed 112 children between 4 and 10 years old in France who had day surgery requiring general anesthesia. Twenty minutes before receiving the anesthesia, 54 kids were given the sedative midazolam and 58 were handed an iPad to distract them. Anxiety levels in both groups of kids and their parents were similar, but iPads conferred none of the side effects of sedatives, the researchers said. Also, they said the kids given iPads were easier to anesthetize. "Our study showed that child and parental anxiety before anesthesia are equally blunted by midazolam or use of the iPad," said Dr. Dominique Chassard and colleagues at Hopital Femme-Mere-Enfant in Bron, France. "However, the quality of induction of anesthesia, as ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Xanax, Surgery, Anxiety and Stress, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Temazepam, Agitation, Librium, Restoril, Xanax XR, Oxazepam, Halcion, Serax, Triazolam

Many Addicts Going Without Meds That Curb Opioid Abuse

Posted 4 Jun 2016 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, June 3, 2016 – The United States is in the grip of an epidemic of opioid abuse. However, new research suggests that drugs that help addicts kick their habit after hospitalization are too seldom used. "Given the high rates at which follow-up services are not provided," the fact that many opioid abusers don't get anti-addiction meds is a "concern," says a team led by Sarah Naeger of the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Her team noted that, according to 2013 federal government data, nearly 1.9 million Americans are now addicted to opioids such as Oxycontin, Vicodin, Percocet, fentanyl and even heroin. In fact, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that more than half of all fatal drug overdoses in 2013 involved an opioid. The issue made news again Thursday when it was revealed that an overdose of one powerful synthetic opioid ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Oxycodone, Lexapro, Zoloft, Hydrocodone, Percocet, OxyContin, Klonopin, Vicodin, Prozac, Norco, Fentanyl, Clonazepam, Celexa, Ativan, Citalopram, Paxil, Valium, Lortab, Sertraline

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, Narcolepsy, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam

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, Narcolepsy, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam

Anxiety Meds Like Valium, Xanax Won't Raise Seniors' Dementia Risk: Study

Posted 3 Feb 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 3, 2016 – Taking one of a class of anti-anxiety pills that includes Ativan, Valium or Xanax does not increase older adults' risk of dementia, a new study finds. However, experts note that these drugs – collectively called benzodiazepines – can have other side effects and should still be used with caution. As the study authors explained, some prior research has suggested that use of the medicines may be associated with increased risk of dementia. However, other findings have contradicted that finding. To look further into the issue, a team led by Shelly Gray, a professor of pharmacy at the University of Washington in Seattle, studied more than 3,400 people aged 65 and older. All did not have dementia at the beginning of the study. The benzodiazepine use of each patient was assessed, and each was then followed for an average of seven years. During that time, 23 percent ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Xanax, Anxiety and Stress, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Social Anxiety Disorder, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Dementia, Temazepam, Alzheimer's Disease, Librium, Restoril, Xanax XR, Oxazepam, Halcion

Single Parents Struggle Most to Get a Good Night's Sleep: Study

Posted 6 Jan 2016 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 6, 2016 – Single parents – moms in particular – operate on fewer hours of sleep and have poorer sleep quality than adults in other types of families. That's the central finding of a U.S. government report, released Wednesday, on the sleep habits of Americans by gender and family type. It's the first time that the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) has assessed adults' sleep habits by their family situation, meaning whether they live in a single- or two-parent home, or in a household without children. "Sleep is another domain in which single-parent families are disadvantaged," the report concluded. While many studies look at health-related outcomes of children in single-parent families, "generally less attention has been paid to the health of single parents themselves," said Colleen Nugent, an NCHS health scientist and lead author of the report. The ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Sleep Disorders, Klonopin, Insomnia, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Fatigue, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Temazepam, Librium, Restoril, Xanax XR, Oxazepam, Halcion, Serax, Triazolam, Versed

Girls Given Risky Meds Don't Get Contraceptive Advice

Posted 16 Dec 2015 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 16, 2015 – New research from a Midwestern hospital suggests a wide majority of teen girls and young women fail to get information about contraceptives when they take medications that could cause birth defects. At issue are so-called "teratogenic" medications, used for conditions ranging from acne to anxiety, that boost the risk of birth defects when taken during pregnancy. Physicians often tell sexually active women to take birth control while they're on the drugs to avoid becoming pregnant, but it's unclear whether younger females routinely get the same kind of guidance. In the new study, researchers examined the medical records of nearly 1,700 females aged 14 to 25 who received just over 4,500 prescriptions for teratogenic medications in more than 4,100 visits from 2008-2012. All the participants had visited a large, unidentified pediatric medical center in the ... Read more

Related support groups: Birth Control, Xanax, Contraception, Plan B, Emergency Contraception, Klonopin, Mirena, Sprintec, NuvaRing, Provera, Clonazepam, Implanon, Nexplanon, Ativan, Depo-Provera, Valium, Ortho Tri-Cyclen, Tri-Sprintec, Topamax, Yasmin

Online Psychotherapy May Help Some With Emotional Problems

Posted 3 Nov 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Nov. 3, 2015 – The Internet has made it possible for people to work and study from home, and new research suggests that a staple of mental health care may also be headed to a computer near you. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a mix of two disciplines that aims to help a person improve the way he or she thinks about problems and problem-solving, while also tackling unhealthy behaviors. For now, online versions of CBT remain rare in North America, with a few pilot programs underway in Toronto, Ohio and Kentucky, said researcher Dr. David Gratzer. He is a psychiatrist and physician-in-charge of mental health inpatient services at Scarborough Hospital in Toronto. "The long and the short of it," he said, "[is that] we love our iPhones here in North America, but we are failing to take advantage of technology for mental health services the way the Swedes and Australians have." ... Read more

Related support groups: Depression, Anxiety, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, Xanax, Anxiety and Stress, Lexapro, Zoloft, Cymbalta, Wellbutrin, Klonopin, Effexor, Prozac, Clonazepam, Celexa, Ativan, Citalopram, Paxil, Valium, Social Anxiety Disorder, Sertraline

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, Narcolepsy, Zolpidem, Hydroxyzine, Buspirone, Melatonin, Temazepam

Kids' ER Visits for Medicine Overdoses Dropping: Report

Posted 8 Sep 2015 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Sept. 8, 2015 – Fewer children are winding up in emergency rooms for accidental poisonings involving commonly used medications, a new U.S. government study finds. "We think these declines are real," said lead researcher Maribeth Lovegrove, of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's division of healthcare quality promotion. Between 2004 and 2013, approximately 640,000 children aged 5 and younger were seen in emergency rooms for ingesting drugs. Of these, 70 percent were 1- or 2-year-olds, and nearly one in five were hospitalized, according to the report. The number of pediatric emergency room visits rose during the early 2000s, peaking at approximately 76,000 in 2010, but declined to approximately 59,000 visits in 2013, Lovegrove said. While there has been a decline in emergency room visits, 59,000 visits a year for young children is still too many, Lovegrove ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Suboxone, Oxycodone, Methadone, Hydrocodone, Percocet, Tramadol, OxyContin, Klonopin, Vicodin, Norco, Cough, Fentanyl, Clonazepam, Morphine, Ativan, Valium, Codeine, Lortab, Tylenol

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

Seniors Still Given Potentially Dangerous Sedatives: Study

Posted 18 Dec 2014 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, Dec. 17, 2014 – Doctors continue to prescribe sedatives such as Xanax or Valium for seniors despite the significant risks they pose, a new study contends. The drugs in question are a class of medications called benzodiazepines. This class includes drugs such as Xanax, Valium and Ativan. As people get older, these drugs are known to put seniors at risk for confusion and falls. Yet, the researchers found that older folks are increasingly being prescribed these medications. The analysis included national data from 2008. It showed that about 5 percent of Americans aged 18 to 80 (11.5 million people) were prescribed these drugs. Just under 3 percent of people between the ages of 18 and 35 were given these sedatives. But among those aged 65 to 80, nearly 9 percent were on the drugs, according to the study. Almost one-third of seniors given these sedatives stayed on them for at ... Read more

Related support groups: Xanax, Klonopin, Clonazepam, Ativan, Valium, Lorazepam, Alprazolam, Diazepam, Temazepam, Librium, Restoril, Xanax XR, Oxazepam, Halcion, Serax, Triazolam, Chlordiazepoxide, Versed, Tranxene, Midazolam

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

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