Valium and Vicodin

Valium

Valium belongs to the class of benzodiazepine drugs and is primarily used to treat anxiety. Valium acts by affecting neurotransmitters (chemicals released to facilitate nerve communication) in the brain by suppressing the nerve activity in both the brain and the spinal cord. Valium has a fast onset of action, delivering its effects between thirty to sixty minutes. It is most commonly prescribed to treat anxiety and seizure disorders, but it is also used to for muscle relaxation and in anesthesia. Common side effects include dizziness, depression, disorientation, sedation, aggression, irritability and tiredness.

Vicodin

Vicodin is a semi-synthetic opioid painkiller that contains a combination of hydrocodone and acetaminophen. Vicodin is commonly used for relieving pain that stems from injuries or surgery. It is created in two strengths: five milligrams of hydrocodone and 325 milligrams of acetaminophen, or ten milligrams of hydrocodone with 660 milligrams of acetaminophen. Common side effects of Vicodin include confusion, slowed breathing, dizziness, impaired judgment, profound drowsiness, nausea, constipation and loss of consciousness.

Valium and Vicodin
Valium and Vicodin are sometimes consumed at or close to the same time -either by a miscalculation made by a physician or through a misguided effort to speed up or enhance the effects of the drugs made by a patient. This is a dangerous occurrence since an interaction of benzodiazepines and opioid medications can result in coma or death. According to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA), the combination of these drugs can adversely affect an individual by depressing their breathing. Despite information and resources that are available to healthcare professionals, it is clear that providers routinely prescribe opioids and benzodiazepines at the same time and are unaware of the potential risks, including overdoes. In a review conducted by the FDA, a trend showed that these drugs are frequently prescribed together by the same healthcare provider and on the same day, with a 41 percent increase of these prescriptions between 2002 and 2014.

In an interview with CBS News, Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Leana Wen stated that “nearly one in three unintentional overdose deaths from prescription opioids also involve benzodiazepines.” According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), more people died from prescription overdoses in 2014 than in any year previously.

In an attempt to curb the dangerous practice of combining Valium and Vicodin, Dr. Wen has been working with the FDA to ensure that the proper label warnings are placed on the nearly 400 different products that are involved in this process.

Valium and Vicodin
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