Misuse of Medicines in the European Union: A Systematic Review of the Literature

Alicia Casati, Roumen Sedefov, Tim Pfeiffer-Gerschel
2012 European Addiction Research  
Although awareness of the misuse of medicines is increasing, data on the extent of the problem in the European Union (EU) are lacking. Methods: In order to assess the magnitude and severity of the problem, a systematic review of the literature on the misuse of analgesics, opioid substitution medicines and sedatives/hypnotics (with the exception of benzodiazepines) was conducted using the PubMed and Web of Science databases. Relevant literature was identified between 2001 and 2011. Results: The
more » ... 2011. Results: The main groups of misused medicines include opioid analgesics, methadone, buprenorphine and Z-drugs. Regional trends in medicine misuse indicate heterogeneity across the EU with respect to misused medicine types and research activities. Prevalence, high-risk populations and factors contributing to medicine misuse are discussed. Conclusion: The implications of these findings for prevention, treatment, and policy in the EU are considered.
doi:10.1159/000337028 pmid:22572594 fatcat:qn6f7cegsjel7ieae6vh52llxe