Health Information

Meprobamate overdose

Meprobamate overdose


Equanil overdose

Meprobamate is a drug used to treat anxiety. Meprobamate overdose occurs when someone accidentally or intentionally takes more than the normal or recommended amount of this medication.

This is for information only and not for use in the treatment or management of an actual poison exposure. If you have an exposure, you should call your local emergency number (such as 911) or the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.

I Would Like to Learn About:

  • Poisonous Ingredient


  • Where Found

    • Equanil
    • Equagesic
    • Meprogesic
    • Miltown

    Note: This list may not include all sources of meprobamate.

  • Symptoms

    Eyes, ears, nose, and throat:

    • Blurred vision
    • Double vision
    • Rapid side-to-side movement of the eyes (nystagmus)


    • Vomiting

    Heart and blood:

    • Low blood pressure
    • Palpitations
    • Rapid heart rate
    • Slow heart rate


    • Labored breathing
    • Slowed breathing
    • Wheezing

    Nervous system:

    • Coma (decreased level of consciousness and lack of responsiveness)
    • Confusion
    • Convulsions
    • Dizziness
    • Excitability
    • Drowsiness
    • Lack of alertness (stupor)
    • Slurred speech
    • Tremor
    • Uncoordinated movement
    • Weakness


    • Blue lips and fingernails
    • Pinpoint red spots
  • Home Care

    Seek immediate medical help. Do NOT make a person throw up unless told to do so by poison control or a health care professional.

  • Before Calling Emergency

    Determine the following information:

    • Patient's age, weight, and condition
    • Name of the product (ingredients and strength, if known)
    • Time it was swallowed
    • Amount swallowed
  • Poison Control What to Expect at the Emergency Room

    The National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) can be called from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.

    This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

    Take the container with you to the hospital, if possible.

    See: Poison control center - emergency number

  • The health care provider will measure and monitor your vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. Symptoms will be treated as appropriate. You may receive:

    • Activated charcoal
    • Breathing support, including tube through the mouth and breathing machine (ventilator)
    • Chest x-ray
    • EKG (heart tracing)
    • Fluids through a vein (by IV)
    • Laxative
    • Medication to treat symptoms
    • Tube from the mouth into the stomach to empty the stomach (gastric lavage)
  • Outlook (Prognosis)

    How well you do depends on the amount of poison swallowed and how quickly treatment is received. The faster you get medical help, the better the chance for recovery.

    With proper care, recovery normally occurs, except possibly in patients with aplastic anemia, because the bone marrow does not produce enough red blood cells.

Related Information



Benitez JG, Allison LG, Ternullo S. Sedative-hypnotics. In: Shannon MW, Borron SW, Burns MJ, eds. Haddad and Winchester's Clinical Management of Poisoning and Drug Overdose. 4th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier; 2007:chap 34.


Review Date: 1/20/2014  

Reviewed By: Jacob L. Heller, MD, MHA, Emergency Medicine, Virginia Mason Medical Center, Seattle, WA. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Isla Ogilvie, PhD, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.

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