Since the prescription sleep-aid Ambien hit the market, there have been many accounts of people doing unbelievable things in their sleep which they do not remember the next day. Ambien has even become an inspiration for storylines in television and movies where viewers can laugh at the crazy and silly behavior of their favorite characters under the influence of the drug. However, the side effects of Ambien can be very serious as a nun in Philadelphia discovered. Sister Kimberly Miller is currently facing drunk driving charges for crashing her car after taking the medication.
The 41-year-old nun, who is also a Catholic high school teacher and librarian, had been having trouble sleeping last November when she took an Ambien before going to bed. The next thing she remembers is waking up in handcuffs while still in her nun’s habit in a New Jersey police station. Sister Miller had driven at least 10-15 miles from the convent in North Philadelphia and over a bridge to New Jersey before crashing into an auto repair shop at 2 A.M. Once again, she has no recollection of this ever happening.
The nun’s attorneys claim she had an adverse reaction from taking the Ambien and having two small glasses of wine at an event that afternoon and another glass of wine before bed. Sister Miller testified she did not know there could be an interaction since it was not mentioned to her by her pharmacist. Prosecutors in the case maintain whether it was intentional or not, she was driving under the influence. Fortunately no one was injured in the crash.
The effects of Ambien may be amusing to some, but as you can see it can also be extremely dangerous. So much so that three years ago the Food and Drug Administration required manufacturers to reduce the recommended dosage for women by 50% after studies showed the higher dose left women more drowsy when they woke up, therefore increasing the chance of a motor vehicle accident. If you or someone you know has been the victim of the serious side effects of Ambien, please call the knowledgeable lawyers at Finz & Finz P.C., help you navigate through the legal process.