Psychotropic Drug Use Associated with Increased Risk for Car Crashes .


Antidepressants, benzodiazepines, and so-called “Z-drugs” such as zolpidem (Ambien) and zaleplon (Sonata) are associated with increased risk for motor vehicle accidents, according to a case-control study in the British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology.

Using registry and claims data from Taiwan, researchers assessed use of psychotropic drugs among 5200 people who were drivers during motor vehicle accidents and 31,000 matched controls who were not in accidents.

Relative to nonusers, the risk for motor vehicle accidents was higher among patients who had taken the following classes of drugs within the previous month: antidepressants (adjusted odds ratio, 1.73), benzodiazepines (1.56), and Z-drugs (1.42), but not antipsychotics. Even relatively low doses of antidepressants and benzodiazepines conferred increased risks.

The authors conclude that clinicians should “choose safer, alternative treatments and advise patients not to drive, especially while taking medications, to minimize the risk of causing [traffic accidents] under the influence of psychotropic medications.”

Source: British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.