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May 1973

Nonmedical Use of Methaqualone

Author Affiliations

Columbus, Ohio
From the Division of Pharmacology (Dr. Gerald) and the Office of Educational Development (Dr. Schwirian), College of Pharmacy, the Ohio State University, Columbus.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1973;28(5):627-631. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1973.01750350011002

The patterns and pharmacological effects of the nonmedical use of methaqualone (Sopors), a nonbarbiturate sedative-hypnotic, were determined in 66 respondents (median age 22 to 25) residing in Coumbus, Ohio. Sixty percent took this drug at least weekly, with 10% once or more daily. The mean duration of drug use was one year, with 20% in excess of two years. The average single and total daily doses, taken orally, were 530 and 724 mg, respectively; marihuana and alcohol were commonly used concurrently. The major effects of methaqualone use were euphoria, relaxation, and relief from anxieties: paresthesia was frequently reported. About one third of the subjects developed varying degrees of psychological and physical dependence after long-term drug administration. The abuse and complications of acute methaqualone toxicity are reviewed and the relative therapeutic utility of this drug is questioned in view of these major problems.

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