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Nonmedical Use of Methaqualone

Michael C. Gerald, PhD; Patricia M. Schwirian, PhD
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1973;28(5):627-631. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1973.01750350011002.
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The patterns and pharmacological effects of the nonmedical use of methaqualone (Sopors), a nonbarbiturate sedative-hypnotic, were determined in 66 respondents (median age 22 to 25) residing in Coumbus, Ohio. Sixty percent took this drug at least weekly, with 10% once or more daily. The mean duration of drug use was one year, with 20% in excess of two years. The average single and total daily doses, taken orally, were 530 and 724 mg, respectively; marihuana and alcohol were commonly used concurrently. The major effects of methaqualone use were euphoria, relaxation, and relief from anxieties: paresthesia was frequently reported. About one third of the subjects developed varying degrees of psychological and physical dependence after long-term drug administration. The abuse and complications of acute methaqualone toxicity are reviewed and the relative therapeutic utility of this drug is questioned in view of these major problems.


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