A British father of two died of an accidental overdose after taking 150 tablets of diarrhoea-relief medicine a day.
27-year-old Aaron McCaffrey from Manchester became addicted to ‘morphine‘ drug to help his headaches and even had plenty of the drugs at home.
On January 13th, Aaron was reported to have taken a large quantity of the painkillers and was found collapsed in a supermarket toilet. He was rushed to the Tameside Hospital where he was put into an induced coma, but died six days later.
His partner Miss Harvey who described Mr. McCaffrey as a ‘fit young man’ before his collapse said she was told that medics had to wait for the drugs to leave his system before he could be woken up from his coma. But because the nature of the overdose was so unusual, doctors did not have any idea how long that would take.
‘It was really scary, because, in the beginning, they didn’t know how to treat him. They had to contact another hospital to ask how to,’ she said in January. ‘For us, it was scary because they said they hadn’t seen anything like it and we didn’t know what was going to happen to him.’
According to Miss Harvey, ‘This was a total shock to everyone when this happened, and of how it happened,’ she said.
‘He had four more cardiac arrests when he was in the hospital and we were told that he had taken hundreds of pills on the day that he died. It was a shock to us as well that he had taken that much.’
Rachel Galloway, the assistant coroner for South Manchester, who has issued a formal recommendation to prevent further deaths, told The Times, that: ‘The concern is that there is no apparent limit on the amount of loperamide medication that can be purchased from a single store.’
The coroner also referred her findings to MHRA. A spokesman for the regulator said: ‘Over-the-counter medicines are safe and effective when used in accordance with instructions on the label and in the patient information leaflet. There is a risk, however, with any medicine that people may deliberately or inadvertently misuse the product.’
The deceased partner Miss Harvey has now set up a petition, to raise awareness of the dangers of over-the-counter medications.