Withdrawal from long-term benzodiazepine use: randomised trial in family practice

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dc.contributor.author Vicens Caldentey, Catalina
dc.contributor.author VicensFiol Gelabert, Francisca
dc.contributor.author Llobera Canaves, Joan
dc.contributor.author Campoamor, Francisco
dc.contributor.author Mateu Sabater, Catalina
dc.contributor.author Alegret, Santiago
dc.contributor.author Socias Buades, Isabel Maria
dc.date.accessioned 2020-01-23T07:30:00Z
dc.date.available 2020-01-23T07:30:00Z
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11201/150674
dc.description.abstract [eng] Background The long-term use of benzodiazepines is highly prevalent in developed societies and is not devoid of risks. Withdrawing patients from these drugs is often difficult. Tapering off benzodiazepines has been shown to be a good strategy for discontinuing their long-term use. Aim To establish the efficacy of an intervention programme for reducing the chronic use of benzodiazepines. Design of study Randomised, two-arm, parallel, non-blinded controlled trial. Setting Three urban healthcare centres covering a population of 50 000 inhabitants (Mallorca, Spain). Method Adult patients (n = 139) taking benzodiazepines daily for more than a year and visited by their family physician were randomised into an intervention group (n = 73) that received standardised advice and a tapering off schedule with biweekly follow-up visits, or into a control group (n = 66), that was managed following routine clinical practice. Both were followed for a year. Results Patients achieved withdrawal or reduced their dose by at least 50% after 6 and 12 months. Abstinence and withdrawal symptoms were also measured. Both groups were homogeneous for personal, clinical and psychological characteristics and for benzodiazepine use. Only two patients from each group were lost to follow-up. After 12 months, 33 (45.2%) patients in the intervention group and six (9.1%) in the control group had discontinued benzodiazepine use; relative risk = 4.97 (95% confidence interval [CI] = 2.2 to 11.1), absolute risk reduction = 0.36 (95% CI = 0.22 to 0.50). For every three interventions, one patient achieved withdrawal. Sixteen (21.9%) subjects from the intervention group and 11 (16.7%) controls reduced their initial dose by more than 50%. Conclusion Standardised advice given by the family physician, together with a tapering off schedule, is effective for withdrawing patients from long-term benzodiazepine use and is feasible in primary care. Keywords: benzodiazepines, primary health care, randomised trial, withdrawal symptoms
dc.format application/pdf
dc.relation.isformatof https://bjgp.org/content/56/533/958
dc.relation.ispartof British Journal of General Practice, 2006, vol. 56, num. 533, p. 958-963
dc.rights , 2006
dc.subject.classification 61 - Medicina
dc.subject.other 61 - Medical sciences
dc.title Withdrawal from long-term benzodiazepine use: randomised trial in family practice
dc.type info:eu-repo/semantics/article
dc.date.updated 2020-01-23T07:30:00Z
dc.rights.accessRights info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess

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