Drug/Laboratory Test Interactions
Chloral Hydrate may produce false-positive results for urine glucose determinations utilizing cupric sulfate as Benedict's Solution. Apparently, the drug does not interfere with urine glucose tests utilizing cupric sulfate tablets (Clinitest®) or glucose oxidase such as Clinistix® or Tes-Tape®. Chloral Hydrate may interfere with fluorometric tests for urine catecholamines, and it has been recommended that the drug not be administered for 48 hours preceding the test. Chloral Hydrate administration may also interfere with the Reddy, Jenkins, Thorn procedure for determining urinary 17-hydroxycorticosteroids.
Pregnancy Category C
Animal reproduction studies have not been conducted with Chloral Hydrate. It is also not known whether Chloral Hydrate can cause fetal harm when administered to a pregnant woman or can affect reproduction capacity. This product should be given to a pregnant woman only if the potential benefit justifies potential risk to the fetus. Chloral Hydrate has been shown to cross the placenta and may be found in the amniotic fluid and fetal blood.
Chloral Hydrate overdosage produces symptoms which are similar to those of barbiturate overdosage and may include coma, hypotension, hypothermia, respiratory depression and cardiac arrhythmias. Miosis, vomiting, areflexia, and muscle flaccidity may also occur. Esophageal stricture, gastric necrosis and perforation, and gastrointestinal hemorrhage have also been reported. Hepatic and Renal function may be impaired and may result in transient jaundice and/or albuminuria. Death may result from respiratory failure or hypertension. Ingestion of 4 grams of Chloral Hydrate has caused death, although some patients have survived the ingestion of as much as 30 grams of the drug. Treatment of Chloral Hydrate intoxication consists of general supportive therapy including maintenance of an adequate airway, assisted respiration, oxygen administration, and maintaining body temperature and circulation. Gastric lavage may be done following oral overdosage if an endotracheal tube with cuff inflated is in place to prevent aspiration of vomitus. Peritoneal dialysis or hemodialysis may be beneficial.
DRUG ABUSE AND DEPENDENCE
Chloral Hydrate is a Schedule IV drug.
Chloral hydrate may be habit forming.
Symptoms of Chloral Hydrate dependence are similar to those of chronic alcoholism. Sudden withdrawal of the drug from physically dependent persons may cause delirium tremens and hallucinations. For this reason, Chloral Hydrate should be withdrawn slowly.