Sleep maintenance insomnia: strengths and weaknesses of current pharmacologic therapies

Annals of Clinical Psychiatry : Official Journal of the American Academy of Clinical Psychiatrists
Russell Rosenberg


Although insomnia is highly prevalent, sleep disturbances often go unrecognized and untreated. When insomnia is recognized, considerable emphasis has been placed on improving sleep onset; however, there is growing evidence that improving sleep maintenance is an equally important treatment goal. A MEDLINE literature search was performed using the search parameters "insomnia," "zolpidem," "zaleplon," "flurazepam," "estazolam," "quazepam," "triazolam," and "temazepam," as these agents are FDA-approved for the treatment of insomnia. Per reviewer comments, the search criteria was later expanded to include lorazepam. A literature search using the terms "trazodone" and "insomnia" was also performed, as this is the second-most commonly prescribed agent for treating insomnia. Sleep efficacy endpoints from randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trials in adult populations and key review articles published between 1975 and 2004 were included in this review. As only one randomized placebo-controlled trial evaluated trazodone use in primary insomnia, the trazodone search was expanded to include all clinical trials that evaluated trazodone use in insomnia. Relevant texts and other articles that evaluated side effect profiles of these agents...Continue Reading


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