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December 1958

An Evaluation of Meprobamate in Opiate Withdrawal

Author Affiliations

Fort Worth, Texas

AMA Arch NeurPsych. 1958;80(6):788-794. doi:10.1001/archneurpsyc.1958.02340120124020

Meprobamate has been reported to relieve muscular spasm, insomnia, and anxiety symptoms.1 Since these findings are prominent in the opiate-withdrawal syndrome, it was hypothesized that meprobamate might be a useful adjunct in the treatment of this illness. To date, only a few isolated observations have been reported. Collomb and Miletto2 reported that several cases of drug addiction responded favorably. In an evaluation of 65 hospitalized alcoholics and 6 drug addicts, Thimann and Gauthier3 found that three patients addicted to diacetylmorphine (heroin) showed a "good" response and the other addicts were unaffected.

Meprobamate has been found useful in the treatment of alcoholism by several investigators. Thimann and Gauthier3 reported that more than 58% of their series showed "marked to moderate" improvement, as manifested by relief of severe anxiety symptoms, subsiding of tremors, and better sleeping and eating. Selling4 noted that meprobamate helped prevent serious alcoholwithdrawal symptoms.