OTHER THERAPEUTIC USES
22–2 summarizes several other important clinical uses of drugs in the
sedative-hypnotic class. Drugs used in the manage-ment of seizure disorders and
as intravenous agents in anesthesia are discussed.
sedative and possible amnestic effects during medical or surgical procedures
such as endoscopy and bronchoscopy—as well as for premedication prior to
anesthesia—oral formulations of shorter-acting drugs are preferred.
drugs such as chlordiazepoxide and diazepam and, to a lesser extent,
phenobarbital are administered in progressively decreasing doses to patients
during withdrawal from physiologic dependence on ethanol or other
sedative-hypnotics. Parenteral lorazepam is used to suppress the symptoms of
and the benzodiazepines have frequently been used as central muscle relaxants,
though evidence for general effi-cacy without accompanying sedation is lacking.
A possible excep-tion is diazepam, which has useful relaxant effects in
skeletal muscle spasticity of central origin .
uses of benzodiazepines other than treatment of anxiety states include the
initial management of mania and the control of drug-induced hyperexcitability
states (eg, phencyclidine intoxication). Sedative-hypnotics are also used
occasionally as diagnostic aids in neurology and psychiatry.