Amphetamines in the Spanish pharmaceutical market

A. Segura, J. R. Laporte, J. Cami

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    Because of the special characteristics of amphetamine products this 'letter to the editor' brings out some considerations on the use of these substances. Their indications are debatable and much less than those recommended by the manufacturers. Certain well-known authorities mention arterial hypotension after spinal anaesthetics, some cardiac arrhythmias, very limited postencephalic affections and treatment of the hyperkinetic syndrome in children, and also - with great reserve - a few nervous depressions. Their efficacy as anorexogenics is very doubtful. In Spain 4.3% of all prescriptions are for sedatives, hypnotics, tranquillizers and other psychopharmaceuticals. In France the percentage is 8.1%, in Great Britain 16.1%, in the USA 16.8%. But in Spain the amount of amphetamines is twice that of Great Britain. Last year 9 million units were consumed in Spain and 4 million in Great Britain; 256 units per 1000 inhabitants were sold in Spain, and 86 per 1000 inhabitants in Great Britain. Most doctors and probably most pharmacists do not know the content of amphetamines in the products prescribed, yet the wrappings or accompanying inserts suggest their use for dysmenorrhoea, precordial pain and the acute pneumopathies of children. Moreover, there are 23 products that combine amphetamines with vitamines, 19 with barbiturates, and 3 with antibiotics.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)501
    JournalMedicina Clinica
    Volume69
    Issue number9
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 1977

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