Diazepam is a derivative of benzodiazepine and is sometimes referred to by its market names of Valium, Stesolid, Seduzen and Apozepam. It can be used to treat many illnesses and disorders including seizures, muscle spasms, anxiety, insomnia, and can help those suffering from alcohol withdrawl.
The World Health Organization has a list of drugs that they feel are the minimum drugs needed for basic human health care. Its ability to treat a different number of conditions puts Diazepam on the list of essential drugs. Out of all the benzodiazepines, it is one of the most commonly prescribed.
Leo Sternbach of Hoffmann-La Roche invented Diazepam and in 1963, it was approved for use. He also created chlordiazepoxide, flurazepam, nitrazepam, clonazepam, and trimethaphan. Diazepam was proven five times more potent than the first benzodiazepine Sternbach invented, chlordiazepoxide.
Diazepam can be administered in four ways: orally, intravenously, intramuscularly and as a suppository. Administering Diazepam orally is the quickest way to absorb it. The peak plasma levels occur between 30 minutes and two hours after administering the Diazepam orally. If you administer Diazepam through an IV, it will begin to take action in about 1 to 5 minutes. If you administer Diazepam intramuscularly, you can expect it to begin working about 15 – 30 minutes after administration.
Because it is highly lipid-soluble, Diazepam is distributed all the way through the body after it is given. It can access both the blood-brain barrier and placenta. Because of this, it can be into breast milk. Once it goes through the body, it is moved to muscles and adipose tissue. Diazepam has been known to become highly concentrated in the adipose tissue.
While Diazepam can relieve many symptoms, it also can have adverse side effects as many drugs can. The following side effects are common in most benzodiazepines:
Somnolence (a state of near sleep that causes drowsiness)
Suppression of REM (not reaching the dream state)
Impaired motor function (feeling uncoordinated, dizzy. or off balance)
Disclaimer: Cliff Schaffer does not personally endorse or support any of the comments made within the writings of this article.