Elderly overprescribed sedatives and anti-anxiety drugs

December 31, 2014 5:00 PM

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Nearly 12 percent of 80-year-old women in 2008 used benzodiazepines, a class of sedatives and anti-anxiety drugs that the American Geriatrics Society says should generally be avoided in the elderly, U.S. pharmacy data revealed.

Benzodiazepines include alprazolam (brand name Xanax), lorazepam (Ativan) and diazepam (Valium) – “a little yellow pill” that the Rolling Stones dubbed “mother’s little helper” in the band’s 1966 rock classic.

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