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This sleep medicine could put older adults at risk for falls

A new study by the University of Colorado at Boulder found that 58% of older adults who took zolpidem (commonly branded as Ambien or Edluar) showed a significant loss of balance and an increase in cognitive impairment when awakened two hours after sleep.

This may not sound all that significant, but when you consider that falls are the leading cause of injury in older adults and that a third of adults over the age of 65 require hospitalization each year after falling, it puts the finding into perspective.

Something to consider if you're taking zolpidem to help you sleep.

Source: University of Colorado at Boulder

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Last updated: March 3, 2011

This Article Was Written By

Martin Reed

Leave a Comment

  • A. Marina Fournier
    March 4, 2011, 7:34 pm

    Given the bad rep Ambien is getting these days–sleep-eating, sleep-driving, and a few less dangerous activities while pretty much asleep, I’m not too suprised by this news. However, if a senior falls and breaks a hip, they often start in a downward spiral towards death in two years or less, depending on what else follows. THAT is the most serious consequence from this situation I know of.