Clinical Update

The “Z-Drugs”: Safety Issues and Misuse Potential

Topics: Anxiety | Clinical practice | Deprescribing | Free Articles | Pharmacology | polypharmacy | prescribing patterns | Risk Management | Sleep | Sleep Disorders

Originally marketed as safer alternatives to benzodiazepines, the Z-drugs—eszopiclone (Lunesta), zaleplon (Sonata), and zolpidem (Ambien)—were considered devoid of misuse potential. But recent data and FDA warnings suggest we’ve been hitting the snooze on them for too long. Here, we review their risks and discuss safe prescribing. Medical risks

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Clinical Update

Muscle Relaxants: Sedatives Often Under the Radar

Topics: Clinical practice | Deprescribing | Opioids | Pain | Pharmacology | polypharmacy | prescribing patterns | Risk Management

Muscle relaxants are a diverse group of medications with varying mechanisms of action (see Commonly Prescribed Muscle Relaxants table below). They are indicated for short-term treatment (2–3 weeks) of acute, painful muscle spasms, as well as some chronic neurologic conditions associated with spasticity. However, many patients with chronic pain are on

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Expert Q&A

The Schizophrenia-OCD Overlap

Topics: Antipsychotics | Aripiprazole | Clozapine | Comorbidity | Diagnosis | Lamictal | Lamotrigine | Obsessive Compulsive Disorder | OCD | olanzapine | Pharmacology Tips | polypharmacy | Quetiapine | Risperidone | Schizoaffective disorder | Schizophrenia

TCPR: What is schizo-obsessive disorder?Dr. Poyurovsky: Schizo-obsessive disorder (schizo-OCD) is not a DSM diagnosis. The term is used to refer to patients with schizophrenic disorders that have comorbid features of OCD. We see these obsessive-compulsive symptoms in schizophrenia more often than would be expected by chance. About one in four patients h

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Research Update

Are SSRIs Associated With Increased Rates of Violence?

Topics: Deprescribing | Mania on Antidepressants | Medication adherence | polypharmacy | Psychosis | Psychotic Depression | Schizophrenia | Tags | Tardive dyskinesia | Withdrawal

REVIEW OF: Lagerberg et al, Eur Neuropsychopharm 2020;26:1–9 TYPE OF STUDY: Analysis of Swedish national registries Soon after the introduction of SSRIs in 1988, case reports began to emerge suggesting that they might trigger violence in a small subset of patients. At the time, such reports were mostly dismissed and attributed to the fact that p

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