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Respiratory depression as side effect: should benzodiazepines be avoided in patients with COVID-19?
  • Sander Borgsteede,
  • Klaas Van Kralingen,
  • Janwillem Kocks
Sander Borgsteede
Health Base Foundation
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Klaas Van Kralingen
Sleep Wake Centre SEIN
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Janwillem Kocks
General Practitioners Research Institute
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Abstract

The pharmacological profile of benzodiazepines includes respiratory depression, and theoretically benzodiazepines might contribute to respiratory dysfunction. There are currently no data that indicate that benzodiazepines are problematic in COVID-19, and the risk is expected to be limited. Benzodiazepines are effective and frequently used, and if there is a clear indication in patients with COVID-19 there is insufficient reason to avoid benzodiazepines based on respiratory depression as side effect.