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Took high dose of zolfresh. Started feeling drowsy. Is there any risk?

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Oncologist, Surgical
Practicing since : 2008
Answered : 576 Questions
Hello Doctor,

My Wife has taken 20 to 25 tables of Zolfresh 10 mg. With in 15-20 mins the tablets started effecting and found her in state of drowsey. We have shifted her to hospital immediately. She was admitted in ICCU and today she is doing well.
my question is:
How fast the Zolfresh 10mg will show the effect, if they were consumend in larger number say' 20-30 tablets at a time.

Will 20-30 tables leads to death?

What are the possibale healt issues after survival?

How is it possiable to get these tables in large quantity without doctors prescription?

Please suggest. I read some articles on the problems arise after survival of suicide by consuming zolfresh.
Posted Tue, 12 Mar 2013 in Medicines and Side Effects
Answered by Dr. Rohan Khandelwal 2 hours later
Dear Sir,

Sorry to hear about your wife's problem and hope she recovers soon.
Zolfresh contains a salt zolpidem which acts as a sedative and is used to treat isomnia. Excess amounts of zolpidem can lead to excessive sedation, pin point pupils, depressed respiratory function, which can then progress to coma. These drugs usually show effect within 15-20 minutes.
Fortunately, there is an antidote available for zolpidem overdose and it quickly reverses the symptoms. It is known as flumazenil and you can request the doctors to administer that to your wife. Despite this she will require close monitoring in an ICU. If she recovers from this episode, there should be no side effects in the future. If the antidote is administered in time, there is good chance of survival.

Usually this medicine is a prescription drug and cannot be purchased otherwise. I am not sure how she procured the tablets.

I hope I have answered your queries and also hope she recovers soon.
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