SECONAL

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SECONAL

Seconal are a class of drugs derived from barbituric acid that act as depressants to the central nervous system. These drugs are used as sedatives or anesthetics and have the potential to become addictive. They’re problematic because there is no good treatment to reverse a barbiturate overdose.

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Seconal are a class of drugs derived from barbituric acid that act as depressants to the central nervous system. These drugs are used as sedatives or anesthetics and have the potential to become addictive. They’re problematic because there is no good treatment to reverse a barbiturate overdose.

Barbiturates have been used for physician-assisted suicide (in states where such procedures are legal).

History Of Seconal

German researcher Adolph von Baeyer was the first to synthesize barbituric acid. Barbital (Veronal) was the first barbiturate and was used for medical purposes in 1903. Barbiturates were frequently used to treat agitation, anxiety, and insomnia, but their use for treating such symptoms fell out of favor due to the risk of overdose and abuse, SECONAL.

Legend has it that the drugs’ name comes from the date Baeyer and his colleagues made the discovery: They apparently went to celebrate their find at a tavern on the feast day of St. Barbara.

Benzodiazepines have largely replaced barbiturates in most medical uses, secon.

Effects Of Seconal

The pharmacological actions of barbiturates include depressing nerve activity in the cardiac, smooth and skeletal muscles. These drugs also affect the CNS in several different ways and can produce effects ranging from mild sedation to a coma depending upon the dosage. Low doses of barbiturates can lower anxiety levels and relieve tension, while higher doses can decrease the heart rate and blood pressure.

Barbiturates have some severe drawbacks, including:

  • Potentially dangerous interactions with other drugs
  • Lack of safety and selectivity
  • A tendency to create dependence, tolerance, abuse, and withdrawal
  • Lack of effective treatment for overdoses

SECONAL

Examples

    • Amobarbital: Commonly referred to as “sodium amytal,” this barbiturate gained a reputation as a truth serum since it proved effective when given to some subjects during interrogation. While it doesn’t actually compel people to tell the truth, amobarbital can slow the central nervous system so that concentration becomes more difficult. The theory was that someone asked a question while under the influence of amobarbital would be less likely to be able to think of a false answer, which requires more focus than simply telling the truth.
    • Butalbital: This short-acting barbiturate is frequently used to treat migraine headaches, often in combination with acetaminophen, aspirin, and caffeine.3 It was marketed under the brand names Fiorinal and Fioricet. It’s also been used as a sedative and an anesthetic.
    • Phenobarbital: This barbiturate was used to treat seizures in young children, due to its effectiveness as an anticonvulsant.4 It also has been used to treat anxiety, drug withdrawal (particularly from other barbiturates) and as a sleep aid.
  • Secobarbital: Marketed in the U.S. as Seconal beginning in 1934, this drug was a widely-prescribed sleep aid.5 It’s the most-used drug in physician-assisted suicides in the U.S.
  • Pentobarbital: Used as an anesthetic in animals,6

     

    this drug formerly used to treat seizures and convulsions has the dubious distinction of being one of the preferred drugs used for state executions in the U.S.

Commonly Used Brand Name(s)Butisol Sodium, Mysoline, Seconal

QUICK LINKS

  • Overview
  • Proper Use
  • Dosing
  • Missed Dose
  • Use & Storage
  • Allergies
  • Pediatric
  • Geriatric
  • Pregnancy
  • Breastfeeding
  • Drug Interactions
  • Other Interactions
  • Other Medical Problems
  • Precautions

Overview TOP

Barbiturates belong to the group of medicines called central nervous system (CNS) depressants (medicines that cause drowsiness). They act on the brain and CNS to produce effects that may be helpful or harmful. This depends on the individual patient’s condition and response and the amount of medicine taken, SECONAL.

Some of the barbiturates may be used before surgery to relieve anxiety or tension. In addition, some of the barbiturates are used as anticonvulsants to help control seizures in certain disorders or diseases, such as epilepsy. Barbiturates may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

The barbiturates have been used to treat insomnia (trouble in sleeping); but if they are used regularly (for example, every day) for insomnia, they are usually not effective for longer than 2 weeks. The barbiturates have also been used to relieve nervousness or restlessness during the daytime. However, the barbiturates have generally been replaced by safer medicines for the treatment of insomnia and daytime nervousness or tension, SECONAL.

If too much of a barbiturate is used, it may become habit-forming.

Barbiturates should not be used for anxiety or tension caused by the stress of everyday life.

These medicines are available only with your doctor’s prescription.

Proper Use TOP

For patients taking the extended-release capsule or tablet form of this medicine:

  • These capsules or tablets are to be swallowed whole. Do not break, crush, or chew before swallowing.

For patients using the rectal suppository form of this medicine:

  • To insert the suppository: First remove the foil wrapper and moisten the suppository with cold water. Lie down on your side and use your finger to push the suppository well up into the rectum.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water.

Use this medicine only as directed by your doctor. Do not use more of it, do not use it more often, and do not use it for a longer time than your doctor ordered. If too much is used, it may become habit-forming (causing mental or physical dependence), SECONAL.

If you think this medicine is not working properly after you have taken it for a few weeks, do not increase the dose. To do so may increase the chance of your becoming dependent on the medicine. Instead, check with your doctor.

If you are taking this medicine for epilepsy, it must be taken every day in regularly spaced doses as ordered by your doctor in order for it to control your seizures. This is necessary to keep a constant amount of medicine in the blood. To help keep the amount constant, do not miss any doses.

Dosing TOP

The dose medicines in this class will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor’s orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of these medicines. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so, SECONAL.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine, SECONAL.

For amobarbital

  • For oral dosage form (tablets or capsules):
    • For trouble in sleeping:
      • Adults—65 to 200 milligrams (mg) at bedtime.
      • Children—Dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For daytime sedation:
      • Adults—50 to 300 mg, taken in smaller doses during the day.
      • Children—Dose is based on body weight or size and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 2 mg per kilogram (kg) (0.9 mg per pound) of body weight taken three times a day.
    • For sedation before surgery:
      • Adults—200 mg taken one to two hours before surgery.
      • Children—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 2 to 6 mg per kg (0.9 to 2.7 mg per pound) of body weight, taken before surgery. However, the dose is usually not more than 100 mg.
    • For sedation during labor:
      • Adults—200 to 400 mg every one to three hours if needed. However, the total dose is usually not more than 1000 mg.
  • For injection dosage form:
    • For trouble in sleeping:
      • Adults—65 to 200 mg, injected into a muscle or vein.
      • Children up to 6 years of age—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 2 to 3 mg per kg (0.9 to 1.4 mg per pound) of body weight, injected into a muscle.
      • Children 6 years of age and over—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 2 to 3 mg per kg (0.9 to 1.4 mg per pound) of body weight, injected into a muscle, or 65 to 500 mg injected into a vein.
    • For daytime sedation:
      • Adults—30 to 50 mg two or three times a day, injected into a muscle or vein
    • For sedation before surgery:
      • Children—Dose is based on body weight and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 3 to 5 mg per kg (1.4 to 2.3 mg per pound) of body weight or 65 to 500 mg per dose, injected into a vein.
    • For control of seizures:
      • Adults and children 6 years of age and over—65 to 500 mg per dose, injected into a vein.
      • Children up to 6 years of age—Dose is based on body weight or size and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 3 to 5 mg per kg (1.4 to 2.3 mg per pound) of body weight, injected into a muscle or vein, SECONAL.

For aprobarbital

  • For oral dosage form (elixir):
    • For trouble in sleeping:
      • Adults—40 to 160 milligrams (mg) at bedtime.
      • Children—Dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For daytime sedation:
      • Adults—40 mg three times a day.
      • Children—Dose must be determined by your doctor.

For butabarbital

  • For oral dosage forms (elixir or tablets):
    • For trouble in sleeping:
      • Adults—50 to 100 milligrams (mg) at bedtime.
      • Children—Dose must be determined by your doctor.
    • For daytime sedation:
      • Adults—15 to 30 mg three or four times a day.
      • Children—Dose is based on body weight or size and must be determined by your doctor. The usual dose is 2 mg per kilogram (kg) (0.9 mg per pound) of body weight three times a day.
CAPSULES

30 caps, 60 caps, 90 caps

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