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Benzodiazepines and disinhibition: a review

  • Carol Paton (a1)

To describe and attempt to quantify the incidence of disinhibitory reactions to benzodiazepines and to identify those at risk. Medline search, 1966–January 2002.


The overall incidence of disinhibitory reactions is small, but those with impulse control problems, neurological disorders, learning disabilities, the under 18s and the over 65s are at significant risk.

Clinical Implications

It is important to be aware of the ability of benzodiazepines to cause behavioural disinhibition and to maintain a high degree of vigilance when these drugs are administered to patients known to be at risk. In patients who have experienced behavioural disinhibition with benzodiazepines, antipsychotic drugs should be used to modify behaviour in any future emergencies.

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Benzodiazepines and disinhibition: a review

  • Carol Paton (a1)
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