Too Many Seniors Given Sedatives, Anxiety Drugs: Study Says

Doctors often prescribe potentially disabling tranquilizers to older Americans, particularly women, a new study shows. 

Nearly 12 percent of 80-year-old women in 2008 used benzodiazepines, a class of sedatives and anti-anxiety drugs that the American Geriatrics Society says should generally be avoided in the elderly, U.S. pharmacy data revealed.

Benzodiazepines include alprazolam (brand name Xanax), lorazepam (Ativan) and diazepam (Valium) – “a little yellow pill” that the Rolling Stones dubbed “mother’s little helper” in the band’s 1966 rock classic.

“The study should be a call to action for us to think about why these medications are being prescribed so greatly in a very vulnerable group,” geriatric nurse Donna Fick told Reuters Health. Full Story.



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