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Current sleeping pill doses could leave drivers drowsy

January 14, 2013 Car Accidents

On behalf of Rosenberg, Minc, Falkoff & Wolff

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently asked that sleeping pill manufacturers lower the recommended doses. Could that help prevent impaired driving in New York City and beyond?

Officials are concerned that people who take sleeping pills that contain zolpidem may experience adverse side effects even after they have had a full night’s sleep. The recommended dosage changes were prompted after driving-simulation studies were completed. Because women eliminate the drug slower than men, they may be at a higher risk of experiencing next-day impairment, which could lead to serious car accidents.

“We’re particularly concerned about driving. A large fraction of the population drives and driving is an inherently dangerous activity,” an official with the FDA said.

The FDA is recommending that manufacturers cut the recommended dose in half for women and that they provide labeling that suggests doctors do the same for men.

Impaired driving is very dangerous. Impaired drivers can hurt themselves and others. People who are harmed by an impaired driver may be left with debilitating injuries. Sadly, an impaired driver can cause fatal injuries.

Although people know that drug use and alcohol consumption can cause impairment, prescription drugs, such as sleeping pills, can also cause drowsiness.

An impaired driver may not only face criminal charges, they could also be held financially responsible for the injuries they cause. New York City residents who are harmed by an impaired driver can pursue compensation to cover medical expenses and lost wages. After all, a car accident victim should not have to face financial burdens as a result of another driver’s negligence.

Source: Health.com, “FDA: Lower Ambien’s Dose to prevent Drowsy Driving,” Amanda Gardner, Jan. 11, 2013