Acute benzo withdrawal is very similar to acute alcohol withdrawal due to the fact that a person can actually die. Believe me, there are thousands of documented cases to support this.
acute benzo withdrawal can be lethal, as can acute alcohol withdrawal. there are accounts of death from acute withdrawal from all manner of substances. however, death is rarely encountered with either benzo or alcohol withdrawal while there was a surprisingly high percentage of death from barb withdrawal. As I understand it, the greater severity of withdrawal and higher potential for lethal overdose are the two reasons benzos replaced barbs for anxiolytic therapies. Barbs are cheaper to produce and just as effective as benzos.
There is a bit of sensationalism with discussions of benzo withdrawal syndromes. One reason is because that's what people are taking now, and so there's greater interest in the subject. Reports of withdrawal lasting years are found all over internet and even in medical literature, but that seems doubtful to me. For year long withdrawal, I think other factors are in force unless maybe we're discussing high dose benzo therapy used in the very young or adolescents when the brain is still developing.
Cessation of any medication should only be done with advice of physician.
coonhound, Good post and great points brought up. You wrote:
"Reports of withdrawal lasting years are found all over internet and even in medical literature, but that seems doubtful to me. For year long withdrawal, I think other factors are in force"
I have to think that many of those reports on longterm withdrawal are also including the PAWS (Post Acute Withdrawal Syndrome) aspect and especially in adults. It can manifest itself for long periods. I also agree with there being other factors in force, as you wrote, and that can include an entire host of things. It would be much easier if every single human's body and mind worked exactly the same when it comes to stopping medications(s). That would probably mean we would all be like robots though and what a boring place this world would be then.....
Don't get me wrong flounder I've taken a Barbiturate or two in my life and they are no joke, very potent and can be very dangerous, especially the ones with the shorter half-lifes.You're right about how the main drug class used commonly nowadays is Benzodiazepines, so it makes sense that they are talked about so often. Frequently the things you hear being tossed around with Benzodiazepines and death is combinations with other drugs. Back when Barbiturates were used more commonly there were substantially more deaths associated with sole use of a Barbiturates drug that caused the death. Benzodiazepines just have a higher safety margin compared to Barbiturates, hence there greater use now. Preachin' to the choir I know, sorry 'bout that.
"For year long withdrawal, I think other factors are in force..." said flounder.
I COMPLETELY agree with you, no question about it.
Take it easy.
I feel like legitimate, pharmaceutical Barbiturates have some how become the 'red-haired stepchild of modern medicine.' To answer your question, YES...they are still prescribed, more than they're talked about. My mother has taken LUMINAL (phenobarbital) for 30 years for Epilepsy, and I have taken it for 5 years for Epilepsy control. Keep in mind this is after all other treatments failed and I had two incidents of Status Epilepticus and nearly died both times. After that my Neurologists quit playing around and went to what they knew would work - Barbiturate Therapy. The only downside is that it is lifelong once started. I also take SECONAL SODIUM (secobarbital) as needed when I feel a seizure coming on (this medication is extremely rare and must be special ordered). This works well because it acts quickly and is not long lasting. For some patients traditional Anticonvulsants simply don't work...they need something stronger...they medically need Barbiturates. Obviously taking these makes you very very tired, and I was falling asleep at stoplights, etc...so my Neurologist had me start taking a low dose of Adderall (amphetamine/dextroamphetamine) to combat the drowsiness. Worked great and has kept me seizure free for 5 years. Literally gave me my life back. I feel normal again. TO ANY PHYSICIAN WHO READS THIS: Open your mind!!! Obviously these drugs aren't first line agents, but don't deny them to those who need them. Many Doctors shutter at the thought of prescribing a CII depressant in conjunction with a CII stimulant, however..."Combination Therapy" (mixing Barbiturates/Amphetamines) for Epilepsy goes back 75 years.
Marathon Pharmaceuticals is the exclusive manufacture of sodium secobarbital (seconal) as of 01/23/2009 in the USA. Same with Nebutal.
Lilly use to make dexamyl ( dexedrine (dextroamphetamine)and amytal (amobarbital)..long time ago...1970's.
There is great information here, & I'm glad I came across it. Thank you all for the knowledge.
Yes, Rolissa, but phenobarb is a long acting barbiturate with no appreciable sedative/hypnotic action and is orescribed solely for the control of epilepsy.
I was recently told that there are at least three companies who manufacture SECONAL SODIUM, the strongest available hypnotic short to medium acting barb, including Marathon. In Canada aI believe that methaqualone is still available on Rx.
Can anyone enlighten me on how I can access these meds which I haven't been able to get since they were withdrawn from the Belgian market a few years back? My sleeper of choice was TUINAL, combination of amobarb and secobarb, which has now ceased production by both companies which made it, Flynn and Lilly. Methaqualone was available in Switzerland under name TOQUILONE until only two years ago, and that is where I sourced it, being a superb daytike sedative - Toquilone Compositum, same as Mandrax (250mg methaqualone plus 25mg diphenhydramine) was the hypnotic version, you may recall that the original Rorer '714' tablet was a 300mg sedative named QUAALUDE.
Is theer any way of obtaining a Canadian prescription if I live in the UK? I do have a friend to whom any meds may be delivered by mail order, or who could even pick up meds dor me in a pharmacy, but unfortunately since the death of my friend who used to post under username Daybreak (RIP) I haven't had a good, reliable friend in the USA who is able to get me the US-only meds which I need. I am a chronic pain patient with a dreadful thanatophobic panic disorder, and there are several meds available in the US only, for example high dosage IR hydromorphone (Dilaudid or the excellent Mallinckrodt and pms generics - Knoll also make good hydromorphone. Here it is used mainly in SR form and the highest IR dosage unit is only 2.6mg. Oxymprphone is available in the US (Endo Opana being the standard, generics being disappointing) and Bangladesh, a difficult country to source from - where Ziska make O-Morphon 10mg tablets, but I prefer to perform a CWE and use in aqueous nasal spray, bioavailability being MUCH higher by that route, a 2mg dosage being stronger than a 10mg oral dose. Global's ER 40mg provides teh best value for money.
Any assistanc with information that could assist would be much appreciated as I am being criminalky underprescribed OxyContin at the moment, at a dosage of one third of what I received, titrated carefully, in 2002! With a pregressive condition, that is no good at all and I am refused rescue meds which I have to go to Netherlands for (Palfium, the King of IR opioids).
Thanks for any help anyone can give with how to obtain an Rx from those countries. I have no wish to buy illicitly from an illegal IOP.