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By Graham Smith for MailOnline. A South African man who had been in a coma for seven years was 'woken up' after being given a sleeping pill. Ayanda Nqinana, from Johannseburg, was left with severe brain injuries after his car crashed along an Eastern Cape road in His doctors said the father-of-one would most likely never recover. But his wife Nomfundo recently read a newspaper article about other long-term coma patients who had woken up after being fed sleeping pill Stilnox.
A South African man who had been in a coma for seven years was 'woken up' after being given Stilnox sleeping pills. She insisted her husband be given the tablets and, just five days later, Mr Nqinana was awake and able to talk. He even recognised relatives, including his son Ayavuya, and could recall conversations from before his crash. Mrs Nqinana tol d TimesLive. Daddy knows my name. Stilnox, also known as Ambien, is a prescription medicine used to treat insomnia by initiating sleep.
It contains Zolpidem, which studies have found increases blood flow in the brain, particularly in areas involved in language comprehension - allowing improved function. Studies into the connection between stroke rehabilitation and Stilnox are ongoing. So far he has found that fewer than 10 per cent of stroke victims respond to the drug. Although Mr Nqinana is unable to hold a proper conversation, he can say the odd word and respond using sign language such as a thumbs-up gesture.
But his doctor, Siyabulela Bungana, remains unconvinced about Stilnox's ability to rouse patients out of a coma. I have not seen any evidence of improvement. The case is not the first time that Stilnox has woken up somebody in a coma. Last December, it is believed to have roused Sam Goddard, 23, after he suffered a series of strokes that left him in a coma. Mr Goddard, from Brisbane, Australia, was playing football in February when his head began to pound so severely he screamed for an ambulance.
But after 45 days in a coma in the Intensive Care Unit at Royal Brisbane Hospital — where he also contracted pneumonia — Mr Goddard woke up and began making slow progress after he was given Stilnox. The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline. Father 'wakes up' from seven-year coma after he is given a sleeping pill Ayanda Nqinana, from Johannseburg, was left with severe brain injuries after his car crashed in His doctors said he would most likely never recover Five days after they started giving him Stilnox, Mr Nqinana showed signs of consciousness By Graham Smith for MailOnline Published: Share this article Share.
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Glamorous Golden Slipper punters don Saudi Arabia opens its airspace to Israel for first time Girl, 7, dies after pretending to hang herself in prank Parsons Green bomber lied about his age to stay in Comments 25 Share what you think. Zolpidem is also available as an oral spray only as the brand-name drug Zolpimist. The immediate-release tablets, oral spray, and Edluar sublingual tablets are used if you have trouble falling asleep.
The extended-release tablets are used if you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. Zolpidem belongs to a class of drugs called sedatives. A class of drugs is a group of medications that work in a similar way. These drugs are often used to treat similar conditions. Zolpidem increases the activity of GABA. GABA is a chemical in your body that causes sleepiness. Increasing its activity helps you fall asleep. Zolpidem oral tablet may cause drowsiness and dizziness. These effects may be more likely to happen during the first few hours after you take the drug.
This drug may also cause drowsiness, dizziness, and diarrhea. These effects may be more likely to occur when you first start taking the drug and during dosage changes. Zolpidem may also cause other side effects. If these effects are mild, they may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. Call your doctor right away if you have serious side effects. Serious side effects and their symptoms can include the following:. Our goal is to provide you with the most relevant and current information.
However, because drugs affect each person differently, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible side effects. This information is not a substitute for medical advice. Always discuss possible side effects with a healthcare provider who knows your medical history. Zolpidem oral tablet can interact with other medications, vitamins, or herbs you may be taking. An interaction is when a substance changes the way a drug works. This can be harmful or prevent the drug from working well.
To help avoid interactions, your doctor should manage all of your medications carefully. Taking zolpidem with certain medications raises your risk of side effects. This is because zolpidem and these other medications can cause the same side effects. As a result, these side effects can be increased. Examples of these drugs include:. Taking zolpidem with certain medications raises your risk of side effects from zolpidem.
This is because the amount of zolpidem in your body may be increased. When zolpidem is used with certain drugs, it may not work as well to treat your condition. This is because the amount of zolpidem in your body may be decreased. However, because drugs interact differently in each person, we cannot guarantee that this information includes all possible interactions.
Always speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions with all prescription drugs, vitamins, herbs and supplements, and over-the-counter drugs that you are taking. If you have an allergic reaction, call your doctor or local poison control center right away. If your symptoms are severe, call or go to the nearest emergency room.
Taking it again could be fatal cause death. Eating food with zolpidem may make the drug take longer to work. You should take this drug on an empty stomach. Drinking alcohol can increase your risk of sedation and drowsiness from zolpidem. If you drink alcohol, talk to your doctor. You may need to be monitored more closely for side effects. For people with depression: This drug may make your symptoms of depression worse.
Ask your doctor if this drug is safe for you. For people with lung or breathing problems: This drug may slow your breathing or make it shallow. This can decrease the amount of oxygen in your blood. If you have trouble breathing, you may already have lower oxygen levels. For people with myasthenia gravis: If you have myasthenia gravis, you may already have lower oxygen levels. For people with sleep apnea: If you have sleep apnea, you may already have lower oxygen levels. For people with liver disease: If you have liver problems or a history of liver disease, you may not be able to process this drug well.
This may increase the levels of the drug in your body and cause more side effects. It may also cause a serious condition called hepatic encephalopathy. With this condition, the poor function of your liver causes problems with the way your brain works. Symptoms can include being confused, forgetting things, and slurring your speech. If you have severe liver damage, you should not use zolpidem. Zolpidem is a category C pregnancy drug.
That means two things:. This drug should only be used if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the pregnancy. Call your doctor right away if you become pregnant while taking this drug. For women who are breastfeeding: Zolpidem may pass into breast milk and cause side effects in a child who is breastfed. Talk to your doctor about breastfeeding your child. You may need to decide whether to stop breastfeeding or stop taking this medication.
The liver of an older adult may not work as well as it used to.