The Effects of Dextromethorphan on Driving Performance and the Standardized Field Sobriety Test.

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Journal of forensic sciences, ISSN: 1556-4029, Vol: 60, Issue: 5, Page: 1258-62

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Perry, Paul J; Fredriksen, Kristian; Chew, Stephanie; Ip, Eric J; Lopes, Ingrid; Doroudgar, Shadi; Thomas, Kelan
Medicine; Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
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article description
Dextromethorphan (DXM) is abused most commonly among adolescents as a recreational drug to generate a dissociative experience. The objective of the study was to assess driving with and without DXM ingestion. The effects of one-time maximum daily doses of DXM 120 mg versus a guaifenesin 400 mg dose were compared among 40 healthy subjects using a crossover design. Subjects' ability to drive was assessed by their performance in a driving simulator (STISIM® Drive driving simulator software) and by conducting a standardized field sobriety test (SFST) administered 1-h postdrug administration. The one-time dose of DXM 120 mg did not demonstrate driving impairment on the STISIM® Drive driving simulator or increase SFST failures compared to guaifenesin 400 mg. Doses greater than the currently recommended maximum daily dose of 120 mg are necessary to perturb driving behavior.