Are Z Drugs Addictive

Daniel Brown
• Saturday, 26 December, 2020
• 14 min read

If you suffer from insomnia or a sleep disorder, it can affect your health, cognitive ability, and hurt your performance in work and in school. When your mind won’t shut off or when anxiety keeps you up at night, you may understandably seek whatever relief you can find.

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Every culture is rife with home remedies that are said to promote relaxation and sedation from a glass of warm milk to sleepytime tea. However, in the 19th and 20th centuries, scientists looked to psychoactive substances to affect the chemical activities in the brain that cause anxiety and sleeplessness.

Barbiturates are central nervous system depressants that quite literally calm your nerves and promote sleep, relaxation, and anti-anxiety. By 1955, another CNS depressant was synthesized called benzodiazepines and its popularity began to grow.

In the 60s and 70s, controversial ad campaigns targeting mothers and homemakers touted the benefits of prescription pills that promoted relaxation. Unfortunately, they have some of the same adverse effects as barbiturates including their addiction liability and potential for paradoxical reactions.

After a while, you will depend on the drug to achieve restful sleep and quitting might result in worse insomnia than before. If Z -drug use starts to negatively affect your work, school, family life, or health, it may be the result of addiction.

According to the US National Library of Medicine (NCBI), The rate of diagnosed insomnia in the UK and North America is estimated at 5–15 %, with up to 40 % of the population experiencing symptoms of daytime sleepiness. The Journal of Toxicology explains that collided can be just as effective as benzodiazepines in treating sleep disorders.

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If you have a prescription for this medication, you must only take it when you know you are about to go to sleep and can remain at rest for seven to eight hours. Talk to your doctor if your sleep problems do not improve after taking the medication as directed.

Clients receive both individual and group therapy sessions at Garden State Treatment Center. We’ll go into more detail on the program pages, but these therapies each have the multi-faceted goals of resolving traumatic events, peer support, and long term relapse prevention.

Most adults will have an episode of insomnia at some point in their lives, per Mayo Clinic. This may occur after a difficult or traumatic event in life, but it is expected to go away within a few days or weeks.

Due to their side effects and abuse potential, benzodiazepines were causing concern among clinicians and health care professionals. The Journal of Toxicology explains that collided can be just as effective as benzodiazepines in treating sleep disorders.

Talk to your doctor if your sleep problems do not improve after taking the medication as directed. It is prescribed in the short term for patients who have insomnia, as it promotes relaxation in the brain.

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The medication will not deepen your sleep or cause you to wake up fewer times. These drugs come with the potential for side effects, and parasomnias are among the most concerning possible issues.

Users are known to prepare meals, drive, have sex, or take part in other activities while they are asleep. They have no recollection of the activity later, per a September 2015 case study published by the Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine.

Drowsiness that lasts after you wake up Reduced appetite Dizziness Memory loss Pain in the eyes With continued use, dependence can form, and this encourages the abuse cycle, leading to addiction.

If you enter a comprehensive addiction treatment program, they will design a withdrawal plan for you. Generally, this involves reducing your dose slowly over time via a tapering schedule.

This will involve good sleep hygiene practices, such as going to sleep and waking up at the same time every time day, ensuring that your bedroom is as relaxing as possible, and learning new strategies to deal with stress. Therapy can address underlying conditions, such as a mental health issue, substance abuse, or an undiagnosed health problem. If you are dealing with a substance use disorder, you may benefit from cognitive behavioral therapy.

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Either form of treatment may be more appropriate depending on your individual situation and level of substance abuse. UCLA’s Semen Institute for Neuroscience and Human Behavior says that treatment should approach recovery from many fronts for best results.

We aimed here at assessing these issues analyzing datasets of adverse drug reactions provided by the European Medicines Agency through the EudraVigilance system. Analyzing the adverse drug reactions databases of each Z -drug, descriptive analyses have been performed on cases and proportional reporting ratios (PRS) computed.

Cases were studied and described, including demographic characteristics and clinical data such as concomitant drugs, doses, routes of administration, and outcomes of the reactions (being fatalities recorded). Considering PRR values and in comparison with zopiclone, collided was more frequently involved in both misuse/abuse and withdrawal issues.

Compared with gallon, zopiclone presented higher dependence and overdose-related issues but slightly lower misuse/abuse and withdrawal PRR values. Current data may only represent a gross underestimate of the real prevalence of Z -drug misuse.

Caution should be exercised when prescribing those molecules, especially for patients with psychiatric illnesses and/or history of drug abuse. We recommend the need to invest in proactive pharmacovigilance activities to better and promptly detect, understand, and prevent any possible misuse potential of prescribed medications.

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Collided is an imidazopyridine with an oral bioavailability of 70% and an elimination half-life of 2.5 hours (NICE, 2004 ; Nut and Stahl, 2010). Gallon is a rapidly absorbed pyrazolopyrimidine with an elimination half-life of 1 hour (NICE, 2004).

Furthermore, a range of case series and postmarketing surveillance studies have given rise to growing clinical concerns among clinicians (Victorri-Vigneau et al., 2014), suggesting that the prevalence of Z -drug misuse issues could have been underestimated compared with benzodiazepines (Dammit, 2009). Z -drug withdrawal symptoms, typically associated with the abrupt cessation of long-term, high-dosage intake, may include insomnia, anxiety, euphoria irritability, tremor, inner restlessness, speech difficulties, abdominal pain, hypertension, tonic-clonic seizures, and confusion/disorientation/delirium (Rank et al., 1991 ; Wong et al., 2005 ; Flynn and Cox, 2006).

The use of either idiosyncratic routes of administration (e.g., injecting) or the intake of high dosages may well increase the risk of Z -drug abuse (Victorri-Vigneau et al., 2007). Conversely, in 2013 the UK’s Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs concluded that gallon and zopiclone should be controlled in the same manner as collided.

To assess the Z -drug misuse-, abuse-, dependence-, and withdrawal-related issues, our study aimed at analyzing the related European Medicines Agency (EMA) EudraVigilance (EV) databases, collecting the voluntary reports of suspected ADR's for all medicinal products authorized in the European Economic Area (EEA). The European pharmacovigilance system and its functions of detection, assessment, understanding, and prevention of adverse drug reactions (ADR's) or any other drug-related problem have been improved in parallel with the 2012 pharmacovigilance legislation (EMA, 2016a ; Tessa et al., 2018).

The EMA is responsible for the safety monitoring of medicines operating through EV, a system managing and analyzing information on suspected ADR's to medicines that have been authorized in the EEA (EMA, 2016a), although reports are received from non-EEA countries as well (for a better understanding of the EMA organization of data collection, please refer to the supplementary material). The Individual Case Safety Reports were identified considering the Preferred Terms (PTs) mentioned.

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The level 2A EV frequency table and line listing of the requested ADR's were here retrieved. Conversely, several ADR's (involving various organ classes, hence identified with specific PTs) relating to the searched ADR (e.g., abuse, misuse, dependence, and withdrawal) could have been reported as well for the same patient (MA EMA, 2017).

The collided, zopiclone, and gallon data analysis referred to a range of parameters, including sociodemographic characteristics (age and sex), source/reporter country (EEA or non-EEA) and reporter qualification (i.e., pharmacist, physician), ADR outcome (fatal, recovered, resolved), drug dosages, and possible concomitant drug(s). The ADR's considered here were, per se, voluntary and unsolicited communications reported by both Regulatory Authorities of the EU Member States where the reaction occurred, and/or by the Marketing Authorization Holders for those ADR's occurring outside the EEA.

“Misuse” was here meant to be the “intentional use for a therapeutic purpose by a patient or consumer of a product, over-the-counter or prescription, other than as prescribed or not in accordance with the authorized product information.” Conversely, “abuse” was defined here as the “intentional, non-therapeutic use by a patient or consumer of a product, over-the-counter or prescription, for a perceived reward or desired non-therapeutic effect including, but not limited to, getting high (euphoria).” The term “addiction,” typically replaced by “dependence,” is the “overwhelming desire by a patient or consumer to take a drug for non-therapeutic purposes together with inability to control or stop its use despite harmful consequences.” Finally, “withdrawal” referred here to “a substance-specific syndrome which follows cessation or reduction in the intake of a psychoactive substance previously regularly used” (Media, 2018). The proportional reporting ratio (PRR) approach, defined as “the ratio between the frequency with which a specific adverse event is reported for the drug of interest (relative to all adverse events reported for the drug) and the frequency with which the same adverse event is reported for the drug(s) in the comparison group (relative to all adverse events for drugs in the comparison group),” was here considered (EMA Even, 2006).

The PRR confidence intervals were here computed as well, indicating with PRR and PRR+, respectively, the lower and upper bounds of the 95% confidence interval (EMA Even, 2006 ; for a better understanding of the PRR calculation, please refer to the supplementary material). Because of EMA protection of privacy and integrity of individuals, data relating to patients affected were fully and completely identified/anonymized; therefore, it was not possible at all to derive from such data the names of the individuals affected by the ADR, not even their country or town.

Moreover, certain data elements (e.g., names/identifiers of individuals involved; country-specific information, nationally authorized products, etc.) Of the total number of ADR's, those relating to misuse, abuse, dependence, and withdrawal issues and judged by the reporter as “suspect” were 537 (12.58%), with “intentional overdose” being the most represented (51.9%).

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A nasal atypical intake modality was reported in 7 gallon cases. Of the total number of collided ADR's (206 315), those relating to misuse-abuse-dependence-withdrawal issues and judged by the reporter as “suspect” were 23 420 (11.35%) (Table 1).

The rates of ADR's with a fatal outcome were higher for collided (20.3%) compared with both zopiclone (9.33%) and gallon (1.1%). Of the total number of ADR's (65 140), those relating to misuse-abuse-dependence-withdrawal issues and judged by the reporter as “suspect” were 9283 (14.25%) (Table 1), with the most represented ADR's including: “intentional overdose” (29.9%), “overdose” (23.1%), and “drug use disorder” (23.1%).

Lower and upper bounds of the PRR confidence interval are reported in Table 3. To the best of our understanding, this paper is the first to provide uniquely systematic data in terms of identification and analysis of collided, zopiclone, and gallon misuse, abuse, dependence, and withdrawal issues.

Together with the World Health Organization’s Drug Monitoring Program, the EV database is considered a worldwide reference standard (Chicano and Chipping, 2018). Conversely, current findings referred to overall much larger (e.g., 33 240 ADR's; corresponding to some 6246 unique cases) numbers of patients presenting with Z -drug misuse issues.

Conversely, compared with zopiclone, collided emerged as being more frequently related to misuse or abuse and withdrawal reports; if compared with gallon, collided was more frequently related to dependence and overdose reports. These data are consistent with previous suggestions (Griffiths and Johnson, 2005 ; Russell et al., 2017) and recent reports based on both zolpidem-related falsified prescription rates in France (Journals et al., 2018) and clinical dependence issue data from an Indian tertiary care center (Shula et al., 2017).

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Indeed, within the Z -drug group, one could argue that gallon may present with the lowest availability levels due to its higher purchase costs (NICE, 2004). It emerged that more than half had used zopiclone, which ranked fourth after diazepam, diazepam, and diazepam.

About 80% of zopiclone users had obtained the drug through a prescription, but 42% reported having purchased it on the streets (Gaffe et al., 2004). Diazepam (53.4%) and zopiclone (24.1%) were the most frequently reported medications, with decreasing numbers of individuals misusing lorazepam (22.4%), alprazolam (17.2%), gallon (11.2%), diazepam (10.3%), clonazepam (7.8%), and collided (5.2%).

Moreover, using data from a health insurance reimbursement database, which collects information from 77% of the French population, Monte et al. (2018) assessed the extent and risk of opioid analgesic abuse related to benzodiazepines and hypnotics; they considered both the molecules’ Doctor Shopping Quantity (intended to assess the extent of abuse) and the Doctor Shopping Index (DSI; intended to identify a signal of abuse). Interestingly, they found that the Doctor Shopping Quantity of anxiolytic and hypnotics (influenced by their large availability levels) was 10 times higher than that of opioids.

Among benzodiazepines, flunitrazepam and collided presented with the highest DSI values (13.2% and 2.2%, respectively) (Monte et al., 2018). Overall, higher levels of physical and compulsive signs of dependence with collided, rather than with zopiclone (Griffiths and Johnson, 2005 ; Russell et al., 2017 ; Monte et al., 2018), have been described.

A UK study on zopiclone-related deaths (Buckley and McManus, 2004) found that the zopiclone fatal toxicity index was similar to that of collided but lower compared with lorazepam, flunitrazepam, diazepam, midazolam, and diazepam. The number of any given compound-related ADR's may not reflect the full extent of the molecule’s potential of misuse.

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Furthermore, a Z -drug illicit market exists (Kamil et al., 2014), further complicating the computation of a reliable, Z -drug availability level denominator. The ADR's reports presented with missing data, such as the dosages ingested and the background diagnosis.

Present data may further support the need to encourage careful prescribing, in line with the UK government’s initiative to review the evidence for dependence on, and withdrawal from, prescribed medicines (Pullman et al., 2015 ; Kurtz et al., 2017 ; Gov.UK, 2018). To manage clinical Z -drug dependence cases, the use of benzodiazepines (e.g., diazepam or clonazepam), gabapentinoids, trazodone, and quetiapine has been suggested (Marian and Kevin, 2007 ; Lottie et al., 2018).

A proactive pharmacovigilance may help monitor and anticipate changes in drug abuse, using elements of clinical, epidemiological, basic science, and social science expertise to increase clinicians’ awareness of drug safety issues (Throckmorton et al., 2018). This research received no specific grant from any funding agency in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

) A double-blind, randomized and placebo-controlled study on the polysomnographies withdrawal effects of zopiclone, collided and midazolam in healthy subjects This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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