Quiz 23: Pharmacotherapy of Muscle Spasms and Spasticity

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Benzodiazepines are widely prescribed for treatment of seizures. Benzodiazepines control seizures by acting in the limbic, thalamic, and hypothalamic regions of central nervous system. In addition to epilepsy, the other indications for benzodiazepines include: • Anxiety: Benzodiazepines are the first-line drugs for the treatment of certain anxiety disorders and are one of the most widely prescribed drug classes in the United States. Benzodiazepines are prescribed in cases of Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). • Insomnia: Benzodiazepines are used to treat insomnia and these drugs acts by reducing the time taken to fall asleep and lengthening the sleep period. • Muscle relaxant: Benzodiazepines are generally employed to provide relief to painful skeletal muscle spasms. These drugs are given for short term to reduce the tone of the skeletal muscle • Panic disorders: Panic disorders can be treated with benzodiazepines as they are safe, and known to bring quick relief from panic symptoms.

Muscle spasms are caused due to intense skeletal muscle contractions that can cause severe pain and disability. Muscle spasms are involuntary contractions of skeletal muscles that are usually localized to a specific muscle group. The etiology of muscle spasms may involve many body systems, including the nervous, musculoskeletal, endocrine, and cardiorespiratory systems. The most common cause of muscle spasm is overuse of a skeletal muscle. On the previous day, A lifted concrete blocks which could have resulted in overuse and strain of skeletal muscle, and thus muscle spasm.

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