Restoril Caused My Wife's Suicide

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Craig Says:

In winter / spring of 2010 my wife started having regular episodes of insomnia and by April it was affecting her pretty badly. She told me she thought she was clinically depressed. She had never had any previous mental problems the whole 20 years I knew her- never any mention of suicidal thoughts. We were happily married and had been saving money over time plus had a large inheritance- we were in the process of looking for a house to buy. I sent her to the doctor to get a sleep aid. He prescribed Ambien but it didn't work and it had bad side effects for her. By early June she had missed work a few times and went back to the doctor to try something else. She also told him she was suffering from anxiety (racing thoughts that prevented sleep). He prescribed a combination of Trazadone (30 mg) and Restoril (30 mg). I was not notified by him and had no idea she was taking something with possible side effects. She took the prescription for about a week according to what was left in the Trazadone bottle. On July 1, 2010 we woke up and she hadn't slept much. She asked me to stay home, but I couldn't. I went to work and called her in the afternoon to see how she was. She sounded really strange, in retrospect I know she was drugged, but at the time I didn't have a clue what was going on. She asked me to come home early and I said I'd try. When I did get home I found her dead by her own hand. After a year of investigating what happened I learned about the prescription and also that the Coroner had a blood sample. I had them send it to a lab for analysis. It showed 2000 ng of Restoril- no Trazadone. That's about twice the prescribed level, so I'm pretty sure she took two pills instead of one out of desperation to sleep. She had been up and clothed earlier in the day and talked to some neighbors- everything seemed normal to them. I'm convinced now that the Restoril sent her over the edge. She was not thinking straight because of the sleep deprivation and was desperate to fall asleep. She had not been planning to do this- it happened suddenly with no warning. Up until then she was suffering from anxiety but I talked to her several times and it seemed like something she could overcome simply by getting some sleep. I'm very disillusioned with the medical profession and the pharmaceutical companies. I think it's a numbers game to them- as long as a small number of people die, "it doesn't matter." They'll still make huge profits, even if a they get dinged with a few lawsuits. My wife was a good, kind soul and was my best friend. This should not have happened. General practitioners, many of whom are now nothing more than drug dealers, should be REQUIRED to contact the family when prescribing these drugs. Her death could have been prevented.

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Verwon Says:

I am very sorry for everything you have been through and the loss of your wife. It is always so tragic, when something like this happens.

Restoril contains the active ingredient Temazepam, it is a Benzodiazepine and it can have bad effects on someone, if they take too much and aren't used to taking these types of medications.

If you want to report a problem with them, I am afraid the only thing I can suggest is that you call the FDA. You can reach them at 888-463-6332.


And, unfortunately, privacy laws do not allow anyone to alert anyone else, when someone is prescribed any type of medication.

Is there anything else I can do to help you?

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Craig Says:

Thanks for the reply. I assume the replier is a doctor. I apologize if I seemed too harsh on the medical field, I know there are good doctors out there, ours was not one of them. I will call the FDA number and make the report but I must confess that I don't expect much to happen. The way of the world is money and any ideas or suggestions that result in less of it for the small number who call the shots will be met with well-financed resistence, or even worse, dissolve in the quiet cloud of apathy. I'll go on living my life by the faith and ideals my wife & I share and I will see her in heaven- that's my only expectation.

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Katie Says:

If your wife had 2000 mg of restoril that is waaaay more than the prescribed dose. They do come in 30 mg pills, so multiplying that by 30 in a month time is still only 900 mg. I have heard of people being on 60 mg per night and I have taken up to 90 with no adverse effects. She had to have taken at least 67, 30 mg pills. Yes, it is a benzo, but it doesn't make you suicidal. I have taken it for years.

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Aldon Says:

In 1994 my wife went to the doctor for congestion. I think she went to the doctor again and received a new prescription. Anyway, the drugs caused her to have insomnia. The doctor proscribed Restoril. After taking it twice, she had a violent reaction. She quit taking it. Several trips to the doctor and one psychiatrist later she could not sleep, could not eat, had muscle spasms and twitching, brutal nightmares, and anxiety. The local doctors were worthless, just legalized drug pushers. Her sister was a med-tech in California and encouraged her to visit. My wife and her sister visited many doctors. I know she was prescribed many other drugs, but I do not remember if she took any. Her condition worsened - nausea, dry heaves, muscle spasms, nightmares, anxiety, you name it. She said, to keep her sanity, she would walk for hours. Finally, she met a psychiatrist from a Stanford medical facility who determined she was medicine sensitive. This caused her reaction to Restoril. Quitting Restoril suddenly had sent her into withdrawal. The only way to stop the withdrawal was to start taking Restoril again and then taper off from the drug gradually. This she did and was able to come back home to Michigan. In the following years she could eat again an regained her lost weight, she still had nightmares, could not sleep the whole night, had anxiety, felt like someone had a fist in her mouth and was pushing the top of her mouth through her brain, throbbing all over her body, and had to live in seclusion at our cabin to avoid interaction with people which caused her to become fatigued and bring on her symptoms. In May of this year (2013), her condition worsened. She would have a good day, then a bad day. Finally, on the Monday before July 12, she had her best day ever. Tuesday thru Friday her condition deteriorated until she could not swallow, could not sit, and could not lay in bed. She was not in a good space. She feared doctors but decided about three weeks prior to see a new non-drug oriented physician. He agreed to take her as a patient, but it was obvious he did not understand her predicament. Since she was feeling so bad on July 12, I called the doctor and explained that this was a life threatening situation. He refused to offer any assistance. My wife wanted to go to our cabin to rest. I took her there and went to town for groceries. When I came back, she had taken her life. We learned a bitter lesson, do not trust your doctor. He only prescribes, if you take the prescription you are responsible for any trouble the drugs cause. Never once did they address any violent reactions that Restoril could cause. Never once did they discuss what to do if you went into withdrawal.

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Jerry Says:

I am concerned about my wife. She takes a 30mg Temazepam now and then and they work well for sleep, but she has been fighting depression for a couple of months and seems to always be physically half-exhausted (not related to the drug, we don't think) and emotionally totally drained. Death has been a topic in the news lately and her reactions seem to be that she would welcome it, is not afraid or concerned at all. How many of those pills could cause HER death? I know she counted them and went to the doc for another prescription so that she had more.... must have nearly 50 or so now. If she went off the deep end and took them, could they kill her?

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Adam Says:
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I should not be here today. I went to the doctor after taking many different sleep aids with no success. I've had sleeping issues for years now. I am also allergic to diphenhydramine which is in most over the counter sleep aids. My doctor prescribed me to take restoril. After taking it for one week, I was in a major state of depression. I wasn't sleeping and the entire world around me was black. After taking it for one week, I decided to take my own life. I swallowed the remaining three weeks of pills in one shot hoping to never wake up again. For some unknown reason, that I can't explain, I survived. I can honestly say that ever since I took that drug I am clinically depressed. I have regular thoughts of suicide and I'm not scared to die anymore, which is a horrible way to feel every day. I have two beautiful young kids and they are what hold me together everyday. I have decided to completely go off all medications to help with my insomnia and depression. From what I have gone through, and what I'm currently going through, I would recommend to never take restoril. It has ruined my life, my marriage, and thoughts for a happier tomorrow. I hate thinking everyday, that when things don't go well, that there's an easier way out. If I could recommend to anyone, stay away from this drug. I hope that one day I will overcome this and live out the remaining years of my life and happiness!

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Matthew Says:
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No she should have told them about her other meds. Don't blame the company either. She overdosed just like my brother died on painkillers it over did it just like your wife she took too many than the bottle said. I'm so sick of ppl blaming doctors when it's their fault it's a great medication.

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Wanda Says:

I know this is years later, but I had to reply. Thank God for YOU it did not provoke suicidal thoughts. This man knew his wife and said until this drug she was not depressed. You sadly have no way to know if it is what caused her suicide.

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Kevlar Says:
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You took 3 weeks worth of restoril and turn around and say to us others that you reccomend to never take it?? Daaa I don't plan on taking 21 pills at one time you dork! Your suggestion is worthless to me. I've had no rem sleep for over a year and take restoril as prescribed. If I feel like I want to die I go to an er and tell them that! I don't try to overdose. Get some help inpatient in a stress unit/psych ward. They are kind compassionate and will dispense your meds for you and if you feel suicidal still in there, tell them. They regularly check levels of depression and anxiety numerous times a day and you see a psychiatrist daily! Please I urge you too seek an inpatient mental health unit in a major hospital before you die and leave your loved ones to suffer. I've been there and they've helped to regulate me...More than once. Please!

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Carol Says:

Did anyone reply to you? I am in a similar situation.

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Yurmum Says:
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Kevlar (# 9) why talk crap about someone sharing there story ?!

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