With the risk rankings of benzodiazepines with equivalently long half-life so that the benzodiazepines with intermediate half-life were given higher dependence risk ratings. Also, the authors wanted to explore the role of the dose on abuse liability and postulated that abuse behaviour would increase with dose. Before ranking, benzodiazepine dose was expressed as the recommended maximum daily dose relative to the affinity for the benzodiazepine receptor in order to control for differences in affinity and thus standardize the doses for the potencies of the cheap drugs.
The benzodiazepines were ranked according to their observed abuse in the benzodiazepine abuse population and according to their expected abuse based on the kinetic parameters as described above. Agreement among the rankings was tested with Kendall’s coefficient of concordance (W) and Pearson’s correlation coefficient (r). The authors also computed a composite score by adding the ranks of three parameters (absorption rate, elimination rate,dose)and correlating this sum of rankings with the observed abuse rank.