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BMJ Case Rep. 2013 Feb 6;2013. pii: bcr2012008381. doi: 10.1136/bcr-2012-008381.

Phenibut dependence.

Author information

1
Centre for Addiction and Mental Health, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

Abstract

Phenibut is a γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA) agonist designed and used as an anxiolytic in Russia. In Western countries, phenibut is not a registered medication but is available through online stores as a supplement. We present a case of a patient who used phenibut to self-medicate anxiety, insomnia and cravings for alcohol. While phenibut was helpful initially, the patient developed dependence including tolerance, significant withdrawal symptoms within 3-4 h of last use and failure to fulfil his roles at work and at home. He finally sought medical assistance in our addictions clinic. We have gradually, over the course of 9 weeks, substituted phenibut with baclofen, which has similar pharmacological properties, and then successfully tapered the patient off baclofen. This required approximately 10 mg of baclofen for each gram of phenibut.

PMID:
23391959
PMCID:
PMC3604470
DOI:
10.1136/bcr-2012-008381
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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