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Prescription Drugs and Driving May Not Mix!

September 27, 2013 | Category: Prescription Errors | Share

Prescription, over-the-counter (OTC) drugs and supplements may not mix with driving. To avoid potential vehicle accidents, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) advises that it is best to be absolutely sure before getting behind the wheel.

Although not all prescription, OTC drugs and supplements cause reactions which may make it unsafe to drive, some do.  WebMd says these reactions include:

      • Sleepiness/drowsiness
      • Blurred vision
      • Dizziness
      • Slowed movement
      • Fainting
      • Inability to focus or pay attention
      • Nausea
      • Excitability

Oftentimes more than one prescription and/or OTC drugs, along with supplements, may be taken at the same time. Even though when taken alone they may not cause an unsafe reaction, the combination of the them may.  The more medications that are taken, the higher the risk of reaction. Many times those taking the medications may not even be aware of suffering from prescription and/or OTC and supplement reactions.

What to do if taking medications?

      • Speak with your doctor honestly and ask him/her whether you can drive.  If you see more than one doctor, speak with each one about driving while on the combination of your prescriptions, OTC drugs and all supplements.
      • Speak with your pharmacist and ask him/her to go over your medications and remind you of any risks.
      • Monitor yourself.  Learn how your body reacts to medications (and supplements).
      • Each person is unique.  Make sure you let your doctor know how a medication is working for you.
      • Carry a medication list with you.

Dr. Regina Bussing in Medications and Car Accidents reports that researchers at McGill University in Montreal, Canada studied records of nearly 225,000 people ages 67 to 84 and found a 45% increase in injury-causing car accidents in people who had been taking a long-acting group of benzodiazepines which are often prescribed for anxiety or insomnia.  These medications can stay in the bloodstream for more than 24 hours.  Further, Dr. Bussing reports that the drugs associated with the higher accident rates include many popular medications such as:

      • Clonazepam (Klonopin)
      • Diazepam (Valium)
      • Clorazepate (Tranxene)
      • Chlordiazepoxide (Libratabs)
      • Flurazepam (Dalmane)

AAA Foundation Roadwise RX - Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A.The AAA Foundation (American Automobile Association) provides a website called RoadwiseRX where you may enter medications, OTC drugs and supplements you may be taking to learn how they may affect your driving.  After entering all medications, OTC drugs and supplements and clicking View Results the website program provides the following information: Medication Interactions, Food Interactions, Driver Warnings, Learn About Your Medications. You will also be able to print out the Results and your Medication List. 

Lee County Injury Attorney, Randall Spivey of Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. recommends, "Driving under the influence, even if it is not alcohol or illicit drugs, can cause major personal injury, even death.  Knowing if or how medications, OTC drugs and supplements may affect driving is important to the safety of everyone."



Lee County Personal Injury Attorney, Randall L. Spivey is a Board Certified Civil Trial Attorney – the highest recognition for competence bestowed by the Florida Bar and a distinction earned by just one (1%) percent of Florida attorneys. He has handled over 2,000 personal injury and wrongful death cases throughout Florida. For a free and confidential consultation to discuss your legal rights, contact the Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A., in Lee County at  239. 337.7483 or toll free at 1.888.477.4839, or by email to  Visit  for more information. You can contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. in Charlotte County at 941.764.7748 and in Collier County 239.793.7748.



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