Metabarbital - General Information:

Metabarbital was patented in 1905 by Emil Fischer working for Merck. It was marketed as Gemonil by Abbott Laboratories. It is a barbiturate anticonvulsant, used in the treatment of epilepsy. It has similar properties to phenobarbital.

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Metabarbital - Pharmacology:

Metabarbital, a barbiturate, is used for the treatment of short term insomnia. It belongs to a group of medicines called central nervous system (CNS) depressants that induce drowsiness and relieve tension or nervousness. Little analgesia is conferred by barbiturates; their use in the presence of pain may result in excitation.

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Metabarbital Interactions

Interactions may occur with the following: adrenocorticoids (cortisone-like medicine), anticoagulants (blood thinners), carbamazepine, corticotropin (barbiturates may decrease the effects of these medicines), central nervous system (CNS) depressants (using these medicines with barbiturates may result in increased CNS depressant effects), divalproex sodium, valproic acid (using these medicines with barbiturates may change the amount of either medicine that you need to take), and oral contraceptives (birth control pills) containing estrogens (barbiturates may decrease the effectiveness of these oral contraceptives, and you may need to change to a different type of birth control).

Metabarbital Contraindications

The following conditions may affect the use of barbiturates: alcohol abuse (or history of), history of/current drug abuse or dependence (dependence on barbiturates may develop), anemia (severe), asthma (history of), emphysema, or other chronic lung disease, diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes), hyperactivity (in children), mental depression, overactive thyroid, porphyria (barbiturates may make the condition worse), kidney disease, liver disease (higher blood levels of barbiturates may result, increasing the chance of side effects), pain (barbiturates may cause unexpected excitement or mask important symptoms of more serious problems), underactive adrenal gland (barbiturates may interfere with the effects of other medicines needed for this condition).

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