High-dose lormetazepam dependence: strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde—comment

  • Luigi Ferini-StrambiEmail author
  • Marco Sforza
  • Andrea Galbiati

Dear Editor,

We read with great interest the article by Faccini et al. [1] entitled “High-dose lormetazepam dependence: strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde”. In this work, the authors retrospectively assessed 1112 patients affected by substance abuse disorder characterized by the abuse of high-dose benzodiazepines (BDZs) and admitted in a tertiary referral addiction unit for detoxification. Among all the available BDZs, lormetazepam was the most common compound with a prevalence that increased from 2003 to 2018. Importantly, lormetazepam abusers significantly differed from other BDZ abusers. The most striking results was that 96.7% of lormetazepam abusers took oral solutions, in contrast, two-thirds of other BDZ abusers took tablets. As reported by the authors, these data underline that drug formulation dramatically impacts on the potential for abuse.

Chronic insomnia is the most frequent sleep disorder encountered in clinical practice. Cognitive behavioral therapy of insomnia...


Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Prof. Luigi Ferini-Strambi received fees from Philips-Respironics, UCB Pharma, Lundbeck, Pfizer, Valeas, Italfarmaco. Dr. Marco Sforza and Dr. Andrea Galbiati have nothing to disclose.

Statement of human and animal rights

This study was conducted in accordance with the ethical standards of our Institutional committee on Human experimentation.

Informed consent

All participants provided written informed consent to the experimental procedure which was previously approved by the local ethical committee.


  1. 1.
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Copyright information

© Società Italiana di Medicina Interna (SIMI) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Luigi Ferini-Strambi
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • Marco Sforza
    • 1
    • 2
  • Andrea Galbiati
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Neurology, Sleep Disorders CenterIRCCS San Raffaele Scientific InstituteMilanItaly
  2. 2.“Vita-Salute” San Raffaele University, Faculty of PsychologyMilanItaly

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