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Physostigmine Reversal of Diazepam-lnduced Hypnosis: A Study in Human Volunteers

G. R. AVANT, M.D.; K. V. SPEEG Jr., M.D., Ph.D.; F. R. FREEMON, M.D.; S. SCHENKER, M.D.; and M. L. BERMAN, M.D., Ph.D.
[+] Article, Author, and Disclosure Information

Grant support: Public Health Service Grant No. 5M01 RR-95 from the General Clinical Research Centers Branch of the Division of Health Resources, National Institutes of Health; and Veterans Administration Research Funds.

Presented in part at the 1978 Annual Meeting of the American Society of Anesthesiologists.

▸Requests for reprints should be addressed to George R. Avant, M.D.; A-3310 Medical Center, Vanderbilt University Hospital; Nashville, TN 37232.

Nashville, Tennessee

© 1979 American College of PhysiciansAmerican College of Physicians

Ann Intern Med. 1979;91(1):53-55. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-91-1-53
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Under randomized double-blind conditions, 1.00 to 1.67 mg of intravenous physostigmine (Antilirium) reversed sleep induced by administration of 0.102 to 0.238 mg/kg body weight of intravenous diazepam in eight healthy human volunteers. Awakening occurred 330 to 740 s after initiation of the physostigmine infusion at a rate of 0.5 mg/min every 4 min. Diazepam plasma levels were not significantly different at the start of either the physostigmine or placebo infusion. Physostigmine did not effect plasma binding of diazepam. Six subjects experienced nausea, and one subject developed an arrhythmia. Physostigmine reverses diazepam-induced hypnosis but causes side-effects requiring cautious administration.





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