Can Benzodiazepines Like Anxiolytic Drugs Cause Cancer?

Benzodiazepines are nothing but a group of sedatives that are widely prescribed and that include Xanax, Valium, Ambien etc. These drugs are commonly taken for anxiety or insomnia, often for a longer period of time.

Xanax, Valium, and Ambien are the few names in the Benzodiazepines category because these all have a structural similarity (which is composed of the benzene ring attached to another ring of seven heterocyclic members called Diazepine).

Cure Your Anxiety the Right Way

Benzodiazepines are the depressants of the nervous system, acting, in particular, on the limbic system. They are part of the Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) complex which is a Neurotransmitter with inhibitory action and its receptors are part of an inhibitory action mediated by GABA.

The benzodiazepine receptors are distributed throughout the brain and spinal cord; they are also found in the adrenal glands, kidneys, pineal gland and platelets. Benzodiazepines have rapid and high absorption and are not degraded before their arrival in the central nervous system.

Benzodiazepines can be administered orally, intramuscularly and intravenously. The lifespan of these drugs varies from 2 hours to 74 hours. Short-acting compounds have better hypnotic results, while long-acting compounds are preferred for their anxiolytic effects.

Take Benzodiazepines the Right Way

Uses of Benzodiazepines

It’s used to treat anxiety, insomnia, alcohol withdrawal, epilepsy, affective disorders, also to treat poisonings with certain drugs.

Types of Benzodiazepines

Usually ends in -lam, -lan, -pam, -pan: Lorazepam, Diazepam (also known as Valium), Clonazepam, Triazolam etc. within this group are classified according to their average life duration in the body.

Effects of the Benzodiazepines

They act as sedatives, hypnotics, muscle relaxants, anticonvulsants, anxiolytics, and amnesia.

Chemical Structure of Benzodiazepines
Chemical Structure of Benzodiazepines

What are the Negative Effects of Benzodiazepines?

Dangerous… I repeat… An overdose of Benzodiazepines, particularly when combined with alcohol or any other types of sedative drugs, can even lead to a coma. The antidote for all benzodiazepines is flumazenil. The symptoms are excessive drowsiness, respiratory depression, confused speech, bradycardia, and hypotension.

There are various side-effects of the drug Benzodiazepine too. The side-effects include:

  • Drowsiness
  • Vertigo
  • Stomach ache
  • Blurred vision
  • A headache
  • Confusion
  • Depression
  • Coordination disorder
  • Temblor
  • Weakness
  • Antegrade amnesia
  • Hangover effect
  • Unusual dreams
  • Nightmares
  • Pain in the chest
  • Jaundice
  • Paradoxical reactions
  • Cross-tolerance (Alcohol)

While benzodiazepines are very effective in the short term (two to four weeks) the side effects associated with long-term use (deficiencies in cognitive abilities, memory problems, mood swings, overdoses when combined with other drugs) can make the risk-benefit ratio wrong.

Other symptoms that may occur are emotional dullness, nausea, headache, dizziness, irritability, lethargy, sleep problems, memory problems, personality changes, aggression, depression, agoraphobia, anxiety and panic attacks, social deterioration and problems labor If consumption is discontinued, the effects of long-term consumption may disappear after 3 or 6 months.

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Conclusion

After reading all the above explanations, you must have understood the risks involved in taking Benzodiazepines for a longer (more than 12 months) period of time.

Can Benzodiazepines Cause Cancer?

Prolonged use increases the risk of developing Alzheimer and even Cancer from an increase in the cases of people with insomnia who use these drugs to sleep, according to neurologists.

The doses and frequency vary for every person to person.  These variations may be on the basis of age, sex, allergies, and any other kind of diseases.

Uncontrolled uses of this drug benzodiazepines can cause any kind of disastrous health hazards. It can make you so addicted that it can even become almost impossible for you to leave it.

Benzodiazepines (Xanax, Valium, Ambien etc.) are not recommended without the medical guidance of any doctor.

Modern Technology Advancements for the Treatment of Cancer

Cancer is the disease which every other person is concerned about these days. If you take a survey, you would realize that there are quite a number of people suffering from this disease at a point in time.

There are a lot of treatments available for cancer these days that are making use of the latest technology to make use of this disease. People from all over the world and scholars from various universities have been trying various methods to treat cancer.

In the recent past, there have been various advancements in the treatment of cancer.

Best Technological Advancements in the Field of Cancer Treatment

  • Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT)

Intensity Modulated Radiation Therapy (IMRT)

This kind of therapy is capable of treating a number of cancer types. It allows radiation oncologists to use higher doses of radiation to cancer cells but limit the exposure to the normal tissues and cells at a minimum.

  • Linear Accelerators

Linear Accelerators

This treatment method enables oncologists to bombard the cancer cells with higher amounts of radiation but in a very controlled way.

The machine makes use of a computerized tool to shape up the radiation according to the treatment plan for the particular patient.

This tool is devised in such a manner that the radiation moves continuously and also change the intensity and the shape of the beam so as to fit the requirement of the patient as per their treatment plan as well as the size and the shape of the tumor so that maximum can be obtained out of it.

  • Image Guided Radiation Therapy

Image Guided Radiation Therapy

It can be used for both tumor controlled radiation as well as sparing the normal tissues from damage due to the effect of the radiation. It can effectively shape up the radiation to suit the shape of the tumor cell and also bombard the malignant tumor cells with higher doses of radiation, however, ensuring that the normal cells around the tumorous tissue are not harmed even the slightest.

A thing about the tumors is that it can move during a treatment and from one treatment session to the next as a result of the normal internal organs and hence it even the smallest differences in the way of the treatment is taken care of.

  • (HDR) High Dose Rate Brachytherapy

(HDR) High Dose Rate Brachytherapy

This therapy is another mode of targeting the tumor cells directly with the high dose rate of radio waves and not affecting the adjacent cells and organs.

The radioactive source travels to the target site with the help of a catheter

  • 3-Dimensional Conformal Radiation Therapy

3-Dimensional Conformal Radiation Therapy

This makes use of the CT simulator which helps the physician to map and pinpoint the target.

Simulations can be performed very easily and quickly and with more efficiency. Furthermore, the procedure is also a patient compliant method.


The clinical application of the new technology allows treating lung, liver, bone and prostate tumors, among others, with the utmost precision in the administration of the treatment.

This precision, together with the possibility of applying high and highly curative doses, translates into a notable decrease in the sessions needed for treatment.

All this said and done there are new avenues to treat cancer and specially customize the treatment program on the basis of the requirement and the compliance ability of the patient.

These new treatment methods for cancer also ensure that more people suffering from the disease can be treated at large.