Friday, November 15, 1963: Valium

Valium (diazepam), a tranquilizer made by the Swiss company Hoffman-La Roche, is approved for sale in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration. The name "valium" was derived from valeo, the Latin word for healthy.

     From a 1970 ad in the journal Hospital & Community Psychiatry: 
     35, single and psychoneurotic
     The purser on her cruise ship took the last snapshot of Jan. You probably see many such Jans in your practice. The unmarried with low self-esteem. Jan never found a man to measure up to her father. Now she realizes in a losing pattern -- and that she may never marry. Valium (diazepam) can be a useful adjunct in the therapy of the tense, over anxious patient who has a neurotic sense of failure, guilt or loss. Over the years, Valium has proven its value in the relief of psychoneurotic states -- anxiety, apprehension, agitation, alone or with depressive symptoms. (Link to this and similar ads: @ and @ and @)
-- Photo from The Science Museum, London

* Entries from U.S. National Library of Medicine: @ and @
* Drug approvals and database, FDA: @
* Prescription information (as of October 2013): @
* "Librium and Valium -- anxious times" (Royal Society of Chemistry, 2008): @
* "Protecting mental health in the Age of Anxiety: The context of Valium's development, synthesis and discovery in the United States, to 1963" (Catherine Guise-Richardson, 2009): @
* "Addiction to Diazepam" (Maletzy and Klotter, The International Journal of the Addictions, 1976): @
* Does It Cure or Increase Anxiety? A Question for Valium Users" (Gilbert Cant, 1976): @
* "Tranquilizer Use and Well-Being: A Longitudinal Study of Social and Psychological Effects" (Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan, 1984): @
* "Happy Pills in America: From Miltown to Prozac" (David Herzberg, 2009): @
* "The Age of Anxiety: A History of America's Turbulent Affair with Tranquilizers" (Andrea Tone, 2008): @
* "Before Prozac: The Troubled History of Mood Disorders in Psychiatry" (Edward Shorter, 2008): @
* "Prozac on the Couch: Prescribing Gender in the Era of Wonder Drugs" (Jonathan Metzl, 2003): @
* "Inventor of Valium, Once the Most Prescribed Drug, Dies" (Washington Post, 2005): @

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