Drugs of the Month:  
Benzodiazepines

More addictive than caffeine, less than cocaine


Benzodiazepine, a fusion of Benzene (right) and a Diazepine ring (left, 2 N substitutions of C),  is the core of the family, whose side chains vary. A phenyl group is often attached at C5 (arrow).

Benzodiazepines were the source of major controversy, and major drug company profits, in the 1980s. Now they are all generic, and as past controversies have subsided, clinicians seem to have settled into two basic camps: one group thinks these drugs are very addictive, and rarely prescribes them; another group thinks addiction concerns are way overblown, and prescribes them commonly.  The PL approach is a third way...


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