Secobarbital is a barbiturate derivative marketed under the brand name Seconal. Barbiturates are central nervous system depressants with sedating properties. The depressant effects which work by slowing down brain activity makes Secobarbital useful in alleviating patient anxiety prior to some surgical procedures and in the treatment of short term insomnia. Research also indicate that Secobarbital enhances neurotransmitter activities in the brain known as GABA (Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid). This neurotransmitter blocks impulses between nerve cells in the brain. Overall the drug is used for its hypnotic, anticonvulsant (treatment of epilepsy) and anesthetic properties.

In appearance, Secobarbital (Seconal Sodium) may be:

  • Orange, 100 mg capsule imprinted with Lily F40, Lilly F40
  • Orange 100 mg capsule imprinted with RX679, RX679

Drug Classification

Secobarbital is classified as a Schedule II controlled substance by the Food and Drug Administration. Drugs in this category meet the classification criteria of having accepted medical use for treatment in the United States but with a high potential for abuse. Severe physical or psychological dependence can occur with the use or abuse of this drug. As such, legitimate use of Secobarbital is strictly by prescription only. The Drug Enforcement Administration also enforces stringent guidelines governing the manufacture, distribution, possession, sale and use of this drug. Violations of these guidelines may carry severe penalties that are punishable under Federal law.

Effects of Secobarbital

Many side effects have been reported by users of this drug such as:

  • Trouble waking up
  • Dizziness,
  • Hyperactivity or feelings of excitement
  • headache,
  • tiredness,
  • loss of appetite,
  • nausea and vomiting

Some users have also reported experiencing memory lapse while under the influence of this drug in which they engaged in activities such as driving without being aware of what they were doing. Other, serious side effects that may necessitate medical attention may include:

  • Shifts in moods such as agitation and confusion
  • Depression and Suicidal thoughts
  • Lack of coordination
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Slurred speech

The onset of Secobarbital withdrawal symptoms can occur quickly after the last use. Those experiencing the following symptoms should be aware that these condition can also escalate rapidly and should therefore seek medical attention.

  • Respiratory depression (trouble breathing)
  • Extreme agitation and anxiety
  • Muscle pain
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Increase in heart beat
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Hallucinations
  • Confusion
  • Seizures

Use and Abuse

Studies show that Secobarbital becomes less effective if it is used consistently for more than a two week period. Patients who take the drug longer and gradually increase the dosage to get the sleep inducing effects can develop high tolerance levels for the drug which is the primary cause of becoming dependent on addictive substances. Overdosing on this drug can lead to addiction and or a fatal drug overdose. Death records of over 15 celebrities that attributed Secobarbital as the cause of death clearly indicate that abuse of this drug can be fatal.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) there has been a 2.5 fold increase in the number of death from prescription drug overdose from 2001 to 2013. Those who use Secobarbital for recreational purposes or to self-medicate away mental anguish can become addicted to the drug can fairly quickly. Even if the drug is used as prescribed by a physician it is possible for dependence on to occur in as little as one week. Once dependence develops, withdrawal symptoms and obsessive cravings often makes it difficult to discontinue use of the drug without professional help.


Safe withdrawal from Secobarbital can be done through a medically supervised detoxification program overseen by board certified doctors, nurses and psychiatrists with experience treating this form of addiction. Sudden withdrawal from this drug is not advised because of the potential for unpredictable withdrawal symptoms. After a thorough physical and Psychological evaluation a gradual detoxification program can help users to safely discontinue use. Psychological issues created by habitual drug use can also be address with various evidence-based treatment programs that incorporate both holistic and conventional therapy processes. Relapse is always a potential risk for some users and poses a significant danger if the drug use is resumed after detoxification. As such, relapse prevention education and training is essential in the treatment of Secobarbital addiction.

Choosing our state of the art facility with around the clock medical oversight and customized treatment is first step in overcoming this addiction. Our dual diagnosis programs also address any underlying co-occurring issues. These are all important and essential elements of a Secobarbital rehabilitation treatment program.

If you or a loved one is at risk of Secobarbital overdose because of abuse or addiction to this drug, we can help. Call our Drug Rehab Treatment Centers at 877-855-3470 today and speak to a qualified, understanding representative whose primary goal is to help you make getting the help you need as effortless as possible.