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Increases in ED visits caused by zolpidem overmedication. Patients taking the antiinsomnia drug zolpidem (the active ingredient in Ambien and other preparations) may sometimes exceed the prescribed dosage, or overmedicate. ED visits attributed to overmedication nearly doubled between 2005-2006 and 2009-2010, according to the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Of 20,793 ED visits just in 2010 (which didn't include visits involving suicide attempts or ingestion of zolpidem with illicit drugs or nonprescribed prescription medications), 37% involved zolpidem alone and 57% involved zolpidem taken with other pharmaceuticals, such as anxiety and pain medications; 14% involved zolpidem plus alcohol. Sixty-eight percent of patients were female. SAMHSA recommends that medical professionals counsel patients to follow instructions precisely and avoid dangerous drug interactions. For details, see