Late Brain Recovery Processes after Drug OverdoseBr Med J 1970; 2 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.2.5705.318 (Published 09 May 1970) Cite this as: Br Med J 1970;2:318
- Ijaz Haider,
- Ian Oswald
Though recovery of consciousness after drug overdose may occur within a day or two, the drug itself may not finally leave the brain for another one to three weeks, and at this late time a withdrawal syndrome can occur, with insomnia, restlessness, raised paradoxical (R.E.M.) sleep, epileptic phenomena, and even delirium. It is proposed that a high degree of drug-tolerance and dependence can be rapidly acquired after overdose.
Abnormal sleep features of 10 patients resolved only slowly over a period of up to two months after overdose. The data support the view that R.E.M. sleep is concerned with processes of brain repair.