£450.00 – £2,200.00
There is a risk of misuse and dependence in both patients and non-medical users of alprazolam; the pharmacological properties of alprazolam include high-affinity binding, high potency, short-acting, and having a rapid onset of action increase the abuse potential of alprazolam. The physical dependence and withdrawal syndrome of alprazolam also adds to the addictive nature of alprazolam. In the small subgroup of individuals who escalate their doses, there is usually a history of alcohol or other substance use disorders.
Despite this, most prescribed alprazolam users do not use their medication recreationally, and the long-term use of benzodiazepines does not generally correlate with the need for dose escalation. However, based on US findings from the Treatment Episode Data Set (TEDS), an annual compilation of patient characteristics in substance abuse treatment facilities in the United States, admissions due to “primary tranquilizer” (including, but not limited to, benzodiazepine-type) drug use increased 79% from 1992 to 2002, suggesting that misuse of benzodiazepines may be on the rise.
The New York Times also reported in 2011 that “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last year reported an 89 percent increase in emergency room visits nationwide related to nonmedical benzodiazepine use between 2004 and 2008.”
Alprazolam is one of the most commonly prescribed and misused benzodiazepines in the United States. A large-scale nationwide U.S. government study conducted by SAMHSA found that, in the U.S., benzodiazepines are recreationally the most frequently used pharmaceuticals due to their widespread availability, accounting for 35% of all drug-related visits to hospital emergency and urgent care facilities. Men and women are equally likely to use benzodiazepines recreationally. The report found that alprazolam is the most common benzodiazepine for recreational use followed by clonazepam.
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