Sleeping Pills May Raise Death Risk in Obese People

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Sleeping pills may nearly double the risk of death in obese people, even those who take 18 pills or less per year, according to a new study.

Researchers from a Scripps Clinic-led study examined information from about 40,000 obese patients, including 10,532 sleeping pill users who took the drugs to for an average of 2.5 years and 23,647 participants who did not take the pills.

The research, which is published in the BMJ Open journal, shows that the use of sleeping pills led to about one extra death per year for every 100 people who ingested the medication and. It also shows that eight of the most commonly used sleeping pills, including Ambien (zolpidem) and Restoril (temazepam), increased the risks of cancer and death in obese people, according to ScienceDaily

Daniel Kripke, a psychiatrist for Scripps, suggested that the risk of death among obese people to take sleeping pills could be linked to some type of interaction between the medications and apnea conditions that are common in larger people.

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