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Magic bullets for insomnia? Patients' use and experiences of newer (Z drugs) versus older (benzodiazepine) hypnotics for sleep problems in primary care.
Br J Gen Pract 2008; 58(551):417-22BJ

Abstract

BACKGROUND

Little is known about patients' perceptions of newer hypnotics.

AIM

To investigate use, experience, and perceptions of Z drug and benzodiazepine hypnotics in the community.

DESIGN OF STUDY

Cross-sectional survey of general practice patients who had received at least one prescription for a Z drug or benzodiazepine in the previous 6 months.

SETTING

Lincolnshire, UK.

METHOD

Self-administered postal questionnaire.

RESULTS

Of 1600 surveys posted, 935 (58.4%) responses were received, of which 705 (75.4%) were from patients taking drugs for insomnia. Of those 705 patients, 87.9% (n = 620) were first prescribed a hypnotic by their GP, and 94.9% (n = 669) had taken a sleeping tablet for 4 weeks or more. At least one side effect was reported in 41.8% (n = 295); 18.6% wished to come off hypnotic medication; and 48.5% had tried to stop treatment. Patients on Z drugs were more likely to express a wish to stop (22.7% versus 12.3%; odds ratio [OR] = 1.67, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.13 to 2.49), or to have attempted to come off medication, than those on benzodiazepines (52.4% versus 41.0%; OR = 1.54, 95% CI = 1.12 to 2.12). The two groups did not differ significantly in respect of benefits or adverse effects.

CONCLUSION

There were no significant differences in patients' perceptions of efficacy or side-effects reported by those on Z drugs compared to patients taking benzodiazepines. Side-effects were commonly reported, which may have contributed to a high proportion of responders, particularly patients on Z drugs who were wishing to stop, or who had previously tried to stop taking this medication. Reported prescribing practices were often at variance with the licence for short-term use.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Faculty of Health, Life and Social Sciences, University of Lincoln, Brayford Pool, Lincoln. nsiriwardena@lincoln.ac.ukNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info availableNo affiliation info available

Pub Type(s)

Comparative Study
Journal Article
Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

Language

eng

PubMed ID

18505619

Citation

Siriwardena, A Niroshan, et al. "Magic Bullets for Insomnia? Patients' Use and Experiences of Newer (Z Drugs) Versus Older (benzodiazepine) Hypnotics for Sleep Problems in Primary Care." The British Journal of General Practice : the Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners, vol. 58, no. 551, 2008, pp. 417-22.
Siriwardena AN, Qureshi MZ, Dyas JV, et al. Magic bullets for insomnia? Patients' use and experiences of newer (Z drugs) versus older (benzodiazepine) hypnotics for sleep problems in primary care. Br J Gen Pract. 2008;58(551):417-22.
Siriwardena, A. N., Qureshi, M. Z., Dyas, J. V., Middleton, H., & Orner, R. (2008). Magic bullets for insomnia? Patients' use and experiences of newer (Z drugs) versus older (benzodiazepine) hypnotics for sleep problems in primary care. The British Journal of General Practice : the Journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners, 58(551), pp. 417-22. doi:10.3399/bjgp08X299290.
Siriwardena AN, et al. Magic Bullets for Insomnia? Patients' Use and Experiences of Newer (Z Drugs) Versus Older (benzodiazepine) Hypnotics for Sleep Problems in Primary Care. Br J Gen Pract. 2008;58(551):417-22. PubMed PMID: 18505619.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Magic bullets for insomnia? Patients' use and experiences of newer (Z drugs) versus older (benzodiazepine) hypnotics for sleep problems in primary care. AU - Siriwardena,A Niroshan, AU - Qureshi,M Zubair, AU - Dyas,Jane V, AU - Middleton,Hugh, AU - Orner,Roderick, PY - 2008/5/29/pubmed PY - 2008/8/2/medline PY - 2008/5/29/entrez SP - 417 EP - 22 JF - The British journal of general practice : the journal of the Royal College of General Practitioners JO - Br J Gen Pract VL - 58 IS - 551 N2 - BACKGROUND: Little is known about patients' perceptions of newer hypnotics. AIM: To investigate use, experience, and perceptions of Z drug and benzodiazepine hypnotics in the community. DESIGN OF STUDY: Cross-sectional survey of general practice patients who had received at least one prescription for a Z drug or benzodiazepine in the previous 6 months. SETTING: Lincolnshire, UK. METHOD: Self-administered postal questionnaire. RESULTS: Of 1600 surveys posted, 935 (58.4%) responses were received, of which 705 (75.4%) were from patients taking drugs for insomnia. Of those 705 patients, 87.9% (n = 620) were first prescribed a hypnotic by their GP, and 94.9% (n = 669) had taken a sleeping tablet for 4 weeks or more. At least one side effect was reported in 41.8% (n = 295); 18.6% wished to come off hypnotic medication; and 48.5% had tried to stop treatment. Patients on Z drugs were more likely to express a wish to stop (22.7% versus 12.3%; odds ratio [OR] = 1.67, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.13 to 2.49), or to have attempted to come off medication, than those on benzodiazepines (52.4% versus 41.0%; OR = 1.54, 95% CI = 1.12 to 2.12). The two groups did not differ significantly in respect of benefits or adverse effects. CONCLUSION: There were no significant differences in patients' perceptions of efficacy or side-effects reported by those on Z drugs compared to patients taking benzodiazepines. Side-effects were commonly reported, which may have contributed to a high proportion of responders, particularly patients on Z drugs who were wishing to stop, or who had previously tried to stop taking this medication. Reported prescribing practices were often at variance with the licence for short-term use. SN - 0960-1643 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/18505619/Magic_bullets_for_insomnia_Patients'_use_and_experiences_of_newer__Z_drugs__versus_older__benzodiazepine__hypnotics_for_sleep_problems_in_primary_care_ L2 - https://bjgp.org/cgi/pmidlookup?view=long&pmid=18505619 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -