NIOSHTIC-2 Publications Search

Hypnotics and shift work.

Nicholson AN; Stone BM
The twenty-four hour workday: proceedings of a symposium on variations in work-sleep schedules. Johnson LC, Texas DI, Colquhoun WP, Colligan MJ, eds. Cincinnati, OH: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 81-127, 1981 Jul; :467-491
Effects of hypnotics on visuo/motor coordination (VMC) were investigated. The study required subjects to position a spot inside a randomly moving circle displayed on an oscilloscope. At zero error, the task took about 25 seconds to reach maximum difficulty. A constant displacement between spot and center of the circle reduced the task to zero difficulty within 6 seconds. Performance was measured by computing mean amplitude of the task over the final 500 seconds. Administration of heptabarbitone (509864) in 200, 300, and 400 milligram (mg) doses caused a decline in performance within 10 to 19 hours. Residual after effects from overnight ingestion of 200mg pentobarbitone-sodium (57330) were similar to those observed with 400mg heptabarbitone. Overnight ingestion of 5 and 10mg of diazepam (439145), 10, 20, and 30mg of temazepam (846504), or 15 and 30mg of oxazepam (604751) did not alter VMC. A trend toward impaired performance was observed with 30mg temazepam which became pronounced with 45mg. With morning ingestion of 10mg diazepam, VMC was impaired at 0.5 and 2.5 hours. Temazepam and oxazepam had no long term metabolites. A dose of 1 to 2mg flunitrazepam (1622624) taken at night resulted in impaired performance the next day. At residual effects were observed with 0.5mg doses. Overnight ingestion of 0.25mg triazolam (28911015) showed no residual effects. A 0.50mg dose had residual effects that disappeared within 11.5 hours. Total sleep time was increased with 10mg diazepam in 19 to 43 year old subjects. Temazepam shortened sleep onset latencies and sleep was improved. Oxazepam increased total sleep time. Effects of flunitrazepam were uncertain. Sleep was improved in 45 to 55 and 20 to 29 year old subjects using diazepam and temazepam. Total sleep time was increased by 10 and 15mg diazepam and by 30 and 45mg oxazepam in 19 to 28 year old males. The authors state that similar drugs might have different effects on sleep.
Shift-work; Sleep-deprivation; Sleep-disorders; Physiological-stress; Health-hazards; Narcotics; Physiological-function; Psychosomatic-medicine
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Publication Date
Document Type
Conference/Symposia Proceedings
Johnson LC; Texas DI; Colquhoun WP; Colligan MJ
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
DHHS (NIOSH) Publication No. 81-127
Source Name
The twenty-four hour workday: proceedings of a symposium on variations in work-sleep schedules
Page last reviewed: September 2, 2020
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division