Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria
On-line version ISSN 1809-452X
OPALEYE, Emérita Sátiro et al. Recreational use of benzydamine as a hallucinogen among street youth in Brazil. Rev. Bras. Psiquiatr. [online]. 2009, vol.31, n.3, pp. 208-213. ISSN 1809-452X. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1516-44462009000300005.
OBJECTIVE: To describe the recreational use of benzydamine, an anti-inflammatory drug, among street youth in Brazil. METHOD: Design: a descriptive, cross sectional survey. Setting: 93 welfare services for the street youth in 27 Brazilian capitals. Participants: 2807 street youth, 10 to 18 years old. Main outcome measures: demographic characteristics, drug use pattern (lifetime use, use in the past 30 days, frequency, and characteristics of use in the past month) and effects of benzydamine through the use of a questionnaire. RESULTS: 78 reported lifetime recreational benzydamine use (67 cases identified only in three capitals). Among the 30 respondents reporting drug use in the last month (the month preceding the survey), 66.7% (n = 20) used the drug on 4 or more days (in the month preceding the survey). The most frequently (50%) pleasure effects reported were hallucination and nonspecific sensory changes described as "trips". Unwanted effects were reported by 75% of respondents, they were especially nausea and vomiting (21.4%). In the majority of the cases, drug was obtained from drugstores without a medical prescription. CONCLUSION: This study identifies the recreational use of benzydamine among street youth, mainly in the Northeast of Brazil, and also indicates the need for special controls on the dispensation of this substance.
Keywords : Benzydamine; Drug abuse; Pharmacoepidemiology; Homeless youth; Drugs with prescription.