Trends in recommendations for the pharmacotherapy of anxiety disorders by an international expert panel, 1992-1997.
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A follow-up survey in 1997 to a 1992 study of the recommendations of an international expert panel on the use of benzodiazepines (BZDs) and other psychotherapeutic medications in the treatment of anxiety disorders suggests that the BZDs remain a mainstay of pharmacotherapy for most of these conditions. BZDs were mentioned more often than any other class of drugs as preferred first-line therapy for anxiety disorders, except obsessive compulsive disorder. The introduction of the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) did not significantly affect the experts' recommendations for the use of BZDs as first-line pharmacotherapy. Rather, the SSRIs displaced the tricyclic antidepressants. Some implications of the continuing recommendations for the use of BZDs in anxiety disorders are discussed.