Eight studies utilizing the standardized on-the-road driving test consistently showed that in the morning following bedtime administration zopiclone (7.5 mg) significantly impaired driving performance. A total of 191 healthy volunteers were tested after placebo and zopiclone (7.5 mg). Meta analyses showed no significant differences in driving performance after zopiclone (7.5 mg) between adult and elderly healthy volunteers. The combined effect size (ES) and 95% confidence interval (95%CI) for healthy volunteers was 0.782 (0.620, 0.944). Relative to placebo, an average increment of 3.0 cm in Standard Deviation of Lateral Position (SDLP) was observed when treated with zopiclone (7.5 mg). This deviation was higher than the increment in SDLP reported for drivers with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.05% (+2.4 cm). Results from driving simulators and psychometric tests are consistent with the on-road driving test results.
In conclusion, zopiclone (7.5 mg) is a reliable positive control, that consistently shows significant and meaningful impairment on the on-the-road driving test.