Baclofen and gamma-hydroxybutyrate withdrawal

Jennifer L. LeTourneau, Daniel S. Hagg, Stephen M. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Scopus citations


Introduction: Benzodiazepine treatment of life-threatening gamma-hydroxybutyrate (GHB) withdrawal is frequently unsatisfactory. Animal studies suggest strongly that treatment with GABAB agonists, such as baclofen, will be a more effective strategy. Methods: A case report from the medical intensive care unit (ICU) of the university tertiary care hospital. Results: A 61-year-old woman was admitted to the medical ICU for severe withdrawal symptoms from chronic GHB use. This manifested as delirium, tremor, and seizures despite only small decreases in GHB dose and treatment with benzodiazepines. The addition of baclofen allowed the rapid sequential decreases in the GHB dose without seizure or delirium and resulted in long-term improvement of her tremor. Conclusions: Baclofen, a GABAB agonist, may be a useful agent in the treatment of severe GHB withdrawal.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)430-433
Number of pages4
JournalNeurocritical Care
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2008


  • Baclofen
  • Gamma-hydroxybutyrate dependence
  • Intention tremor

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Critical Care and Intensive Care Medicine


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