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Benzo Pharmacology, Dependence, and Advocacy: A Conversation with Dr. Robert Valuck (Part 2 of 2)

Updated: Mar 21, 2023

Robert J. Valuck, Ph.D., is a Professor in Clinical Pharmacy, Epidemiology, and Family Medicine at the University of Colorado (CU) and the Director of the Center for Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention at CU. This is a conversation not to miss.

In part 2 of our conversation, we explore benzodiazepine advocacy and the hurdles we face, the use of flumazenil for benzo detox, the mechanisms of benzodiazepines in the body, and so much more. We also share a story from Chris in Australia and talk about how benzos have forced many of us to re-evaluate our priorities in life.

Video ID: BFP070


Watch the Podcast

This episode is part of a 2-part series. Listen to Part 1 here:

The Benzo Free Podcast is also available on...



00:00 INTRODUCTION 02:25 Re-Evaluating One’s Priorities 10:02 BENZO STORY: Chris’s Story 18:55 FEATURE: Conversation with Dr. Valuck 19:55 Raising Benzo Awareness 24:10 Doctors Not Taught to Stop Meds 25:50 Polydrugging / Deprescribing 30:18 A Pill for Every Ill Mentality 32:20 Patient / Doctor Partnership 35:28 Flumazenil Detox 41:27 Mechanisms of Benzos / GABA 43:23 Benzo Belly / GI Effects 45:22 Communicating the Severity 47:32 Is the Damage Permanent? 49:12 Dr. Valuck’s Closing Thoughts 51:18 Interview Closing: Part 2 52:49 MOMENT OF PEACE



The following resource links are provided as a courtesy to our listeners. They do not constitute an endorsement by Easing Anxiety of the resource or any recommendations or advice provided therein.

FEATURE: Conversation with Dr. Rob Valuck



In today’s intro, I discussed how benzo withdrawal and other similar experiences can lead us to make changes in our lives, in particular with what we value as our priorities.


Benzo Story

For today’s benzo story I shared one from Chris, in Melbourne, Australia.



Our feature today is a Conversation with Dr. Robert Valuck, Part 2. This was an amazing conversation with someone who has decades of experience not only in pharmacology, but in advocacy for change, both for opioids, and benzodiazepines. Check out our chapter list above for highlights of our conversation. It’s a good one.


The Podcast

The Benzo Free Podcast provides information, support, and community to those who struggle with the long-term effects of anxiety medications such as benzodiazepines (Xanax, Ativan, Klonopin, Valium) and Z-drugs (Ambien, Lunesta, Sonata).


All content provided by Easing Anxiety is for general informational purposes only and should never be considered medical advice. Any health-related information provided is not a substitute for medical advice and should not be used to diagnose or treat health problems, or to prescribe any medical devices or other remedies. Never disregard medical advice or delay in seeking it. Please visit our website for our complete disclaimer at


Music provided / licensed by Storyblocks Audio

Benzo Free Theme

— Title: “Walk in the Park”

— Artist: Neil Cross


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