To the Editor.—
In 1956, Moersch and Woltman1 first described the stiffman syndrome, a disease characterized by progressive fluctuating muscular rigidity and spasm. By now, more than 50 cases are known in the literature, two of which were reported in The Journal (195:222, 1966). Gordon et al2 made a thorough survey of the syndrome in 1967. Diazepam in high dosages, usually around 40 to 60 mg/day, has been the only known treatment, with considerable relief of symptoms in a majority of cases. Mertens and Ricker3 have also found clinical improvement after administration of γ-amino-β-hydroxybutyric acid derivatives. I report a patient who had good clinical improvement after receiving the new benzodiazepine derivative, clonazepam.
Report of a Case.—
A 55-year-old diabetic woman was admitted to the hospital in April 1976 with the diagnosis of drug abuse. She had been found to consume up to 40 mg diazepam (Valium) daily.
Westblom U. Stiff-Man Syndrome and Clonazepam. JAMA. 1977;237(18):1930. doi:10.1001/jama.1977.03270450020010
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