The consequences of drug misuse on post-marketing surveillance

Fabrizio Schifano, Duccio Papanti, Laura Orsolini, John Corkery

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Over the past decade, the ‘traditional’ drug scenario has shown significant changes because of the emergence of a range of molecules, e.g. the novel psychoactive substances (NPS), which are either already existing or newly created
molecules [1]. A range of prescribed medications are currently being used as NPS [1]. Overall, the misuse and diversion of medications is a significant and increasing public health concern [2], with 5.4% of British respondents aged 16–19 years old having abused a prescription drug in the past 12 months [3]. It
is a matter of concern that, for a range of prescribing molecules (e.g. gabapentinoids), the formal pre-marketing processes had not been able to appropriately identify their potential for abuse, a potential which has however emerged overtime [4,5]. Similarly, drugs such as benzodiazepines and
z-hypnotics were considered ‘safe’ for many years before their
addictive liability levels were identified.

Hence, in this article, we aimed at commenting on the different factors relating to pre- and post-marketing prescription drugs’ abuse liability assessment; issues likely to be complicated by recent changes in drug scenarios.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)867-871
Number of pages5
JournalExpert Review of Clinical Pharmacology
Issue number7
Early online date20 Apr 2016
Publication statusPublished - 25 Apr 2016


  • Pharmacovigilance
  • addiction
  • drug misuse
  • addictive liability
  • novel psychoactive substances
  • prescription drugs
  • prescribing medications


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