Are Newer Sleep Aids Superior?
The Oregon Health & Science University recently posted anon-line report (Drug Class Review on Newer SedativeHypnotics, December 2005) that offers an answer to this question.The authors conclude that most comparisons found thenewer sedative hypnotics no better than older benzodiazepinehypnotics in terms of efficacy and short-term adverse events.
The comprehensive review of clinical trials investigating theefficacy and safety of hypnotic agents covered both the olderbenzodiazepine sleep aids and the newer sleep aids introducedsince 1992. It included 141 trials with both direct headto-head and indirect comparisons of the newer sleep aids. Theresearchers found some differences among the newer sleepaids on some outcome measures, but no one drug appeared tobe consistently better.