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PSYC62 - Ch8 textbook notes

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Suzanne Erb

PSYC62 Chapter 8 pg 169181Barbiturates and Other SedativeHypnotics barbiturates sedatives and hypnotic agents have effects similar to alcohols effects except longterm alcohol exposure has more toxic physiological consequences sedativehypnotic compounds wo the barbiturate structure have been synth2esized which determines barbiturates differ from eachother in terms of pharmacokinetics how quickly the drugs act their intensity of action and their duration of action all three of these properties are tied together the differences in these properties determine what these drugs are used for a factacting ultrashortduration ie representative barbiturates are thiopentaldrug used as an anesthetic secobarbital a shortduration drug used as a sleep inducer pentobarbital and amobarbital used for their sedativesleepinducinga longacting drug used as a sedativeanticonvulsant qualities phenobarbitalmedical uses for these drugs have declined over the past 3 decades bc of development of newer compounds w less toxicity or dependence liability primary advantage of barbiturates is their costsince theyre not under patent they are inexpensivethese drugs decrease the excitability of neurons throughout the nervous system barbiturates predominantly hyperpolarize neurons barbiturates are inhibitory in that they enhance GABAs activity at GABAtype Areceptor resulting in opening of Cl channels and increased Cl influx leading to hyperpolarization primary action of barbiturates is to prolong the duration the channels remain openconsistent feature of barbiturates in humans is to increase EEG slow wave activity thetadelta waves and reduce alpha wave and fast beta wave activity theta activity results when a person has eyes closed under resting conditions linked to sleepiness delta activity corresponds to sleepalpha activity occurs when person is in a relaxed awake state w eyes closedbeta activity occurs when a person concentrates on a task w eyes open alertnessin general in a 8hr night of sleep we go thru several stages of sleep these stages differ w respect to how easy it is to wake the person how physiologically aroused the body is the mental content the types of EEG waves produced and their eye movementsmost nonbenzodiazepine sedativehypnotics tend to prolong deeper stages of sleep and reduce REM rapid eye movement vivid dreams take place during REMcrosstolerance occurs with all these substances psychological and physical dependence associated with them is similar
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