People Addicted to Opioids Turn to Imodium
In America, one in five people has a family member addicted painkillers. Also, another four in ten know someone addicted to opioids. To combat abuse, Congress has passed stronger regulations to curb access to these painkillers. Therefore, addicts now are turning to over-the-counter medications to achieve the same high.
About Imodium A-D
Approved by the FDA in 1976, Imodium A-D (loperamide) is a commonly used over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription medicine that helps control symptoms of diarrhea. It’s sold under the OTC brand name Imodium A-D. There are also generic store brands. This medication treats sudden diarrhea by slowing down the movement of the gut. This decreases the number of bowel movements and makes the stool less watery. Plus, it also reduces the amount of discharge in patients who have undergone an ileostomy. People with inflammatory bowel disease use the medication as well. It is important to note that Imodium A-D only treats the symptoms and not the cause of diarrhea.
Imodium & Opioids
Imodium is not an opioid, but it contains loperamide. In high doses, loperamide works similarly to morphine. In high doses, it could have psychoactive effects. Also, other medications like Zantac taken with Imodium may increase in high by penetrating the blood-brain barrier to enhance the opioid effect. Plus, unlike opioids, loperamide is low cost and easy the get over the counter. However, there is no warning or stopping of this abuse. Also, the FDA has warned of Imodium and heart problems.
Imodium Abuse Linked to Heart Problems
The FDA warns that taking more than the recommended dose of Imodium AD can cause serious heart problems. These heart problems including abnormal heart rhythms could lead to death. Also, taking Imodium in combination with other medications could interact with the medication. A number of poison control reports increased concerns about Imodium. Some combined Immodium and heartburn medication Prilosec and had adverse events. In fact, the Upstate New York Poison Center called for the removal of both medications from over-the-counter sales.
Imodium AD Risks
There are many heart-related risks when using the OTC medication, Imodium AD. These include:
- Abnormal heart rhythms
- Serious cardiac events
- QT interval prolongation
- Heart electrical cycle disruption
- Torsades de Pointes
- Sudden cardiac death
- Cardiac arrest
- Ventricular arrhythmias
Since FDA approval, the government agency received 48 reports of serious heart problems associated with Imodium. However, this number is expected to be grossly under-reported. Of the 48 cases, only half came after 2010. However, 31 cases resulted in hospitalization, and 10 patients died. Patients should always follow dosing recommendations listed on the package and always tell a doctor about all the medications they are taking, including OTC medications.
Symptoms of an overdose include fainting, rapid heartbeat, irregular heart rhythm, and unresponsiveness. The maximum approved dose for over-the-counter use is eight milligrams a day and 16 milligrams for prescription use. People abusing the drug took up to 300 milligrams.
We Want to Help Imodium Opioids Victims
Undeniably, manufacturers should inform you about the long-term risks associated with the medications, and it is also their responsibility to provide this information. If you or a loved one took Imodium AD and suffered a cardiac adverse event or a heroin-like high, you should demand accountability. We want to also help send a message that this is not acceptable. We are advocates for harmed consumers of dangerous products, and we have the experience to successfully litigate these cases.
Contact the Michael Brady Lynch Firm today for a free consultation to learn more about seeking justice. Compensation may be available for any medical expenses associated with this ordeal, as well as for your physical and emotional suffering. There is no obligation.