Benzodiazepine use does not increase dementia risk in older adults
Ten-year study found no increased risk of dementia or cognitive decline among participants given the highest levels of benzodiazepines.
Source: Zephyr / Science Photo Library
Benzodiazepines are often used in older adults to treat sleep, anxiety and depressive disorders. But there have been conflicting reports on their association with the risk of dementia.
In a new study of 3,434 people aged 65 years and over, researchers found no increased risk of dementia or cognitive decline among those who were given the highest levels of benzodiazepines. The team observed a slight increased risk of dementia among those with the lowest use, but their analyses suggested this likely reflected treatment of the early symptoms of dementia.
Writing in The BMJ (online, 2 February 2016), the researchers say the ten-year prospective study overcame several limitations of previous studies that found contradictory results. However, they note that as benzodiazepines are associated with multiple adverse events, they should be avoided as far as possible in older adults.
Citation: The Salvadore DOI: 10.1211/CP.2016.20200658
Recommended from Pharmaceutical Press
Patient Care in Community Practice is a unique, practical guide for healthcare professionals or carers. Covers a range of non-medicinal products suitable for use at home.£22.00
The only pharmacy-specific OSCE revision guide. This easy-to-use book covers the key competencies that will be tested in your exams.£25.00
Drugs and the Liver assists practitioners in making pragmatic choices for their patients. It enables you to assess liver function and covers the principles of drug use in liver disease.£38.00
This established textbook covers every aspect of drug properties from the design of dosage forms to their delivery by all routes to sites of action in the body.£48.00
Introduction to Renal Therapeutics covers all aspects of drug use in renal failure. Shows the role of the pharmacist in patient care for chronic kidney disease.£38.00