Negligent Ambien Prescription Triggers Hallucination in Young Girl

Meghan Ross, Associate Editor

A family has taken the first step toward a lawsuit against CVS after 1 of its pharmacies gave a 12-year-old girl Ambien instead of her prescribed antibiotics.

A family has taken the first step toward a lawsuit against CVS after 1 of its pharmacies gave a 12-year-old girl Ambien instead of her prescribed antibiotics.

Riley McDougall experienced severe hallucinations as a result of the powerful sleeping pill, and her family members have now filed an initial claim against the Corona, California, CVS pharmacy for negligence, according to NBC Los Angeles.

Upon viewing cell phone video, Riley told NBC that she didn’t recognize herself screaming and crying in the tape. The video shows her trying to pull a stair railing off a wall during a hallucination in which she mistook the railing for a curtain, Riley’s mother Coleen told NBC. The 12-year-old said she does not remember the incident.

At the emergency room, physicians told the family that Riley might have had a bad reaction to Sudafed, which Riley was taking for a cold.

However, Riley was also taking azithromycin, so the next day, the young girl skipped the Sudafed and took what she thought was her antibiotic. Twenty minutes later, Riley was experiencing double vision, NBC reported.

Coleen called her CVS pharmacy and described the medicine to a pharmacist, who realized that Riley had been given Ambien instead of azithromycin, NBC reported.

“This is pure negligence,” the family’s attorney Jeffrey Greenman told NBC. “They have protocols in place to prevent these things from happening.”

Greenman also mentioned that Ambien and the antibiotic pills did not resemble each other.

In a statement, CVS maintained that its patients’ health and safety was the company’s number 1 priority.