Zetran is a now-discontinued brand name for the generic drug diazepam. For this reason, any brand-name Zetran someone comes across is likely either counterfeit or expired. Although Zetran is no longer manufactured, diazepam is still a widely available drug. Diazepam is classified as a benzodiazepine or benzo. It is a Schedule IV controlled substance, meaning that it carries a risk of abuse and dependence.

Article at a Glance:

  • Zetran was previously a brand name for diazepam. Although diazepam is still available, the brand name Zetran has been discontinued.
  • As a Schedule IV controlled substance, diazepam has a risk for abuse and dependence.
  • Diazepam suppresses the central nervous system, leading to relaxation and euphoria.
  • Side effects of taking too much diazepam can include sedation and confusion.
  • Medical detox can help you safely stop diazepam while avoiding complications from withdrawal.

Zetran Addiction

Because diazepam is a controlled substance, addiction and misuse are possible. Misuse often begins when someone takes this substance in a way other than what’s directed by a physician. This can include taking a higher dose than what a doctor instructs or by taking it more often.

Diazepam misuse can also occur if a person takes this medication without a prescription or takes it recreationally to achieve certain effects, such as relaxation. Before a doctor prescribes diazepam, they will often go over a person’s medical history to ensure they aren’t at high risk of developing a substance use disorder.

The risk of physical dependence is present with diazepam. Physical dependence is different from addiction. With dependence, the user’s body and brain become dependent on the presence of the substance to feel normal. If someone is physically dependent on diazepam and they stop taking it suddenly, they may go through withdrawal. Withdrawal symptoms of diazepam can be serious and can include seizure. The longer someone takes diazepam, the more likely they are to become physically dependent on it.

What was Zetran?

Zetran was a prescription medication with the generic name diazepam. Diazepam is FDA-approved for use as an anti-anxiety medication, anticonvulsant, antispasmodic and as treatment for alcohol withdrawal syndrome.

Although the brand Zetran has been discontinued, diazepam is still available in different dosage forms, including oral tablets, oral liquid, rectal gel and injection.

Like other benzos, diazepam calms neural and brain activity. Despite the potential benefits, it is intended only as a short-term medication as long-term use can lead to physical dependence. Its efficacy and safety, when taken for longer than four months, has not been studied.

Signs, Symptoms & Side Effects of Abuse

If someone is prescribed a benzo like diazepam, doctors will monitor the person to make sure they are taking the drug as prescribed and not misusing it.

Signs of diazepam misuse can include taking more of the drug than what’s prescribed, taking it more often than what’s instructed or taking the medication without a prescription.

Signs of addiction include:

  • Compulsive drug-seeking behavior
  • A constant focus on getting the next dose of diazepam
  • Continuing to take it even when there are negative consequences
  • Being dishonest or stealing to get more diazepam
  • Forging prescriptions
  • Purchasing diazepam or other benzos illegally
  • Doctor shopping to get multiple prescriptions
  • Stealing medications from friends or family

Zetran Overdose

While it is possible to overdose on diazepam alone, it is also common to overdose after taking benzos with other substances. For example, more than 30% of opioid overdoses also involve a benzo.

Signs that a person has taken too much of a benzo can seem similar to being intoxicated from alcohol.

Possible signs of an overdose can include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Lethargy
  • Slow reflexes
  • Loss of coordination
  • Low blood pressure
  • Slowed breathing

If you suspect someone has taken too much diazepam, it’s extremely important to get emergency help for them right away. An overdose can be fatal if breathing slows down too much. Opioid reversal agents like naloxone, sold under the brand name Narcan, do not work at reversing a benzo overdose.

Combining Zetran with Other Substances

Diazepam should never be combined with other substances or prescription medications without the consent of a medical professional. Because benzos like diazepam suppress the central nervous system, taking other central nervous system depressants like opioids can increase the risk of side effects like slowed breathing. The risk of combining benzos with opioids is so dangerous that there is now a Black Box Warning from the FDA. Other central nervous system depressants include:

  • Antihistamines
  • Muscle relaxants
  • Sleep medications
  • Seizure medications
  • Some mood medications
  • Alcohol

Zetran and Alcohol

Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for people to combine benzos and alcohol. There are different reasons for this:

  • People might inadvertently mix a prescription benzo with alcohol without understanding the potential risks.
  • People also recreationally mix benzos like diazepam with alcohol to amplify the effects and feel a greater high.

People who take a benzo like diazepam should avoid alcohol. The risk of dependence is increased if a person takes both substances together. Further, both alcohol and benzos increase the amount of the chemical gamma-aminobutyric acid, or GABA, in the brain. This chemical helps to depress the central nervous system. The result can be excessive sedation if the substances are combined, with potentially fatal results.

Zetran Withdrawal

When you take benzos, it is easy to become physically dependent on the drug, even if you take it as prescribed. In physical dependence, the brain becomes used to the presence of a drug, leading to withdrawal symptoms if the drug is suddenly stopped. For this reason, it is important to only stop taking a benzo under medical supervision.

Diazepam withdrawal symptoms can include:

  • Tremor
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Muscle cramps or pain
  • Vomiting
  • Sweating
  • Headache
  • Anxiety
  • Tension
  • Restlessness
  • Confusion
  • Irritability
  • Derealization
  • Depersonalization
  • Hypersensitivity to sound, light or touch
  • Numb or tingling extremities
  • Hallucinations
  • Seizures

Withdrawal Timeline and Symptom Duration

Diazepam is a long-acting benzo, released in the body over a period of time. Withdrawal usually begins two to seven days after the last dose is taken and can last eight weeks or longer. Withdrawal symptoms can fluctuate over this time and be hard to predict. For this reason, every person’s benzo withdrawal symptoms and time course may be different. Going through benzo withdrawal without medical supervision can be dangerous for this reason.

Zetran Addiction Treatment & Detox

The Recovery Village medical staff are experts in diazepam detox and treatment. We work with people who are physically dependent on diazepam and struggle with stopping the drug. The first step to stopping diazepam is always a successful detox. From there, you can move on to receive rehab treatment that will help you to recover from your drug use.

Medical Detox

The best option for a safe diazepam detox is to go to a professional, accredited facility. Medical detox ensures that a person is kept as safe and comfortable as possible as they go through withdrawal.

There are certain medications a person can be given to ease symptoms, and doctors can monitor their vital signs to ensure the person is safe. Following detox, a person can then enter a treatment program to address the psychological and lifestyle components of recovering from diazepam addiction.

Treating the Addiction

During diazepam addiction treatment, there is usually a combination of different therapeutic approaches. Cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT, is often the foundation for addiction treatment. During CBT, people can start looking at the triggers and thought patterns in their life that led them to misuse diazepam.

People are also treated for co-occurring mental health conditions that may have played a role in their relying on diazepam.

Often, group therapy sessions are included in diazepam rehab programs. Many programs will include supplemental activities as well, like wellness programs. All of the elements of rehab should come together for a holistic treatment plan and teach you the skills you need to cope with life without diazepam.

Following the first stages of diazepam rehab, you will work with your treatment team on an aftercare plan to prevent recurrence of use.

Choosing a Zetran Rehab Center

Diazepam rehab often starts at an inpatient treatment center. These programs typically have a structured schedule and a combination of therapies. The duration may be set in advance or may be flexible, depending on the program.

Outpatient detox programs often follow inpatient programs, allowing people to live at home while undergoing treatment. It’s important for people to realize that if they have developed a psychological need for diazepam, the craving won’t just go away after detox.

There are different types of facilities available for people seeking help with diazepam addiction. Recovery is a process that continues for the entirety of a person’s life. That’s why it’s important to choose the right treatment and rehabilitation program.

A good program will provide a person with the tools and coping mechanisms they need to increase their chances of recovery. If you or someone you know is struggling with addiction to Zetran, contact us at The Recovery Village today to explore available treatment options.

FAQs & Related

  • How do benzodiazepines work?

    Benzos have a calming effect on the neural activity of the brain. Specifically, benzos influence GABA, one of the main neurotransmitters in the brain that inhibits excitement. Benzos enhance GABA, which sends signals to depress neuron activity in the brain. This action can relieve symptoms of anxiety and can cause drowsiness or sedation.

  • How common is benzodiazepine addiction?

    Up to 18% of Americans have misused sedatives like benzos during their lifetime. Of these, almost 10% meet clinical criteria for substance abuse or dependence.

  • Why is Zetran sometimes prescribed for alcohol withdrawal?

    Benzos like diazepam may be used to treat alcohol withdrawal symptoms when a person is detoxing from alcohol. Alcohol withdrawal syndrome can be very severe or even deadly, and people may suffer complications like hallucinations, seizures or delirium tremens. Experts consider benzos like diazepam to be the gold standard to prevent these side effects. 

  • What is the half-life of Zetran?

    The half-life of any substance refers to the time it takes for half the substance to be eliminated from the system. Generally, it takes five half-lives for a drug to be completely removed from your body. The half-life of diazepam is up to 48 hours, meaning that it takes around 10 days to completely rid your system of diazepam. However, diazepam breaks down into metabolites like N-desmethyldiazepam, which has a half-life of up to 100 hours, meaning that it can stay in your body for around 20 days. The half-life can be further prolonged in those with liver problems, as diazepam is broken down by the liver.

  • How long does Zetran stay in your system?

    Factors like age and liver function play a role in how long diazepam is detectable in one’s system. In general, the larger the dose and the more frequently the drug is taken, the longer it remains detectable in the system.

    Diazepam is detectable in plasma for up to 37 hours and in urine for up to seven days. It may be found in saliva for up to two days. Further, both diazepam and its metabolites can be found in hair, with a 1.5-inch sample of hair generally showing the past 90 days of drug use.

Medical Disclaimer: The Recovery Village aims to improve the quality of life for people struggling with substance use or mental health disorder with fact-based content about the nature of behavioral health conditions, treatment options and their related outcomes. We publish material that is researched, cited, edited and reviewed by licensed medical professionals. The information we provide is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers.