Sharon Manning

cautionary tail/ pergiloid
Hi all,
I haven’t been here in a long time because I haven’t needed to. Knock on Wood.
I have spent the last few days in the hospital in the MCI after arriving via ambulance.
After mistakingly taking my horses pergiloid of 16mg. Its amazing that I am alive, and I wanted to share my experience with you all as a reminder of the serious drug we all are handling daily for our precious PPID horses. My mistake came close to taking my life but my knowledge (because mainly of this group) of the drug and fast action saved my life.
Understandably the poison control nor the ER doctor had any experience with this drug and overdosing of such.This drug has been off the market for humans for a long time and NO one would take it recrecationally or for suicide attempts. 
How did something like this happen? By any chance do some you multi task? Do any of you push to meet deadlines and take care of others? Well, I was pushing too hard one morning getting my husband off to go out of town, fixing the horses feed, steaming hay, making my protein drink which I used to take a few supplements. I also was working a problem over the phone about my daughters birthday present. I fix my horses feed in our mud room off the laundry and kitchen. Walking back and forth drinking my smoothie popping my supplements I took the pergiloid out of the frig just like I have every morning for years. Walking to the mud room to add it to the feed the phone rang.  I held that capsule in my hand sat down my smoothie and answered the phone. After handling that problem I picked up my drink to down the last bit and mindlessly I pop that pergiloid cap in my mouth and down it went. As I put my empty glass down into the sink its as if I was in slow motion. Looking into that glass I thought oh dear God what did I just do? I quickly checked the horse feed for the capsule and back to the kitchen looking all over the counters around where I picked up the phone. Nope not there.I got the bottle out of the frig and sure enough the count proved me to be in serious trouble.
I pull up the poison control number on my computer and called. After dealing with the agent and repeating the same information over and over, realizing this was a waste of my time, I hung up as in just these few minutes symptoms were starting. Trembling and shaking with increased respiratory rate. I tired to tell myself it was just me being scared. I called 911 and going through the same repetition of answering the same questions over and over I held on trying to convince the agent the serious nature I want I had done. Trembling and starting to sweat profusely I pick up my keys, turned every thing off and headed out to the front yard begging the 911 agent to send the EMTs. She finally told me they were already on the way and I sat on the swing to wait. I was feeling a little spacey but still thinking clearly. I can only guess but at the time the EMTs arrived it was about 15 minutes total. The ambulance was right behind them.They didn’t have a clue what to do for me. So I asked to be taken to the ER. As the ambulance arrived I got up to walk and was totally unable to control my muscles and began having what I was told later wasTurrets. As I was being strapped in I began to feel as if I could not breath. They started oxygen and then the projectial vomiting all the way to the hospital. In the ER I was left to the side because according the the attending physician I was uncooperative to his questions and directions. The Turrets was causing verbalizations other that what I was trying to say. I was being treated as a drug addict and or a suicide. The ER doc told the EMT that he would draw my blood and see what I really had taken and then give me something for nausea get someone from social services and send me home. While left in the care of the ER nurse my Turrets continued to become more animated. Hyper sensitiviey to light and sound started and through the fog of what I was later told was spacial schizophrenia I watched the ER doc studying me and then question the nurse about my behavior and verbalizations sense she had been taking care of me. He then did administer a drug for nausea which helped but didn’t completely stop it. A internal medicine doc was brought in and he realized something different was being experienced then the typical OD. My husband was there by this time (two hours later) and a neurologist was brought in. The neurologist new exactly what he was seeing because he new all about the drug. He however had no experience with a overdose of the drug but he acted quickly with a drug that had a counter effect of pergolide, stopped the nausea and took over my case, emitted me to treat symptoms as they showed. At this point they were expecting hallucinations  and seizures and I was put in the MCI. He told us this would be a hit and miss in treatment and possibly some long term issues. If I need to be put on anti psychotics  for a while.
Looks like the vomiting removed most of the drug from my stomach and there is no way to know just how much I did absorb into my system. I am at home recuperating and doing well.
Im only sharing my humilating mistake to ask you all to rethink and as a reminder how you handle this medication. Feeding becomes a automatic function after a while and if there are other animals or children around I employ you to treat this drug like a loaded gun.
I hope is helpful.
Cushing/IR 05
NAT 2/09
DEW 08/10
COH 04/11
BRR 2015
AAL 2015

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Oh Sharon,

How awful. Thank goodness you were able to remain relatively clear headed thru this experience as it no doubt saved your life.

Thank-you for sharing and reminding all of us to remain vigilant when handling all meds as I'm sure anyone could find themselves in a similar situation on one of those days when life gets just too hectic.

Healing thoughts for a quick and full recovery.

Lavinia and George Too
Nappi, George and Dante Over the Bridge
Jan 05, RI
ECIR Support Team

Eleanor Kellon, VMD

OMG Sharon. Thank goodness you're OK. That's a hefty dose even for a human.

[If you do have anything residual I hope you can sue the pants off the jerk in the ER.]
Eleanor in PA 
EC Owner 2001

Shevawn Romine

Sharon,   What a horrifying experience – I have thought of that very thing when preparing pill into capsule in kitchen,   where I take my meds or if grandkids/granddogs  are around and I drop one.    Folks with other health issues certainly may not have survived this – so glad you did!   But it makes me have to wonder how it makes my horses feel?    

Cassie and Shevawn
03/2015   Gordon, TX
CH folder: 

Maxine McArthur

I'm so sorry you had this awful experience, Sharon, but thank you for sharing. It is a timely reminder indeed. 
Maxine and Indy (PPID)

Canberra, Australia 2010



What a nightmare Sharon!  I'm so glad that you are home and doing well and hope you continue to do well and have no long term effects.  When/if you feel up to it, you should contact the patient advocate at that hospital and talk over your ER experience.  
Maggie, Chancey and Spiral in VA
March 2011
ECIR Moderator/Primary Response

Paula Hancock

Wow, Sharon, so glad you are doing better!  It's good that you were so knowledgeable and level headed in such a challenging situation.  I totally agree with Maggie about contacting the patient advocate.  Medical professionals need to listen to patients, not just assume they know...  Keep us posted on how you are doing.  
Paula with Cory (IR & PPID?and Onyx (IR/PPID)

  and Remy (?)

Bucks County, PA, USA

ECIR Primary Response

NRCplus 2011  ECIR 2014


Nancy C

Oh my Sharon. Been doing s lot of multitasking with drugs these days. Thank you for your story and a million thanks you are pulling through. 

This is is a first in my memory. 
Nancy C in NH
ECIR Moderator 2003
DDT+E = effective treatment for PPID and EMS/IR equines:


Ted Wells

I am so sorry and so grateful you caught it in time. Most MDs would have no knowledge of the drug, thank goodness your neurologist did. This is why I put my horse's medications in a pill by day case in the feed room, and keep it outside the kitchen and bedroom, because these things do happen.

On Friday, February 8, 2019, 8:38:50 PM CST, Nancy C <threecatfarm@...> wrote:

Oh my Sharon. Been doing s lot of multitasking with drugs these days. Thank you for your story and a million thanks you are pulling through. 

This is is a first in my memory. 
Nancy C in NH
ECIR Moderator 2003
DDT+E = effective treatment for PPID and EMS/IR equines:



Nope Nancy!  Karen also took Inky's pergolide by mistake: 
Maggie, Chancey and Spiral in VA
March 2011
ECIR Moderator/Primary Response

Nancy C

So much for my memory.....

Thanks Maggie. 
Nancy C in NH
ECIR Moderator 2003
DDT+E = effective treatment for PPID and EMS/IR equines:


LJ Friedman

I thought pergolide was a benign medication. Thank you for your update. Hope you feel great
LJ Friedman  Nov 2014  San Diego, CA

Jesse's Case History 
Jesse's Photos


Lorna Cane

Years ago one of my Dobes got a 1mg capsule, which had been dropped on floor.She was out of it the entire day,and into the evening....sleeping,and with those eyes that are drooped and red.Looked as if she were just beginning to come out of sedation.

Very glad to hear you are ok , Sharon.What a nightmare....and so easy to see how that could have happened .

Lorna  in Kingston, Ontario, Canada
ECIR Moderator



On Sat, Feb 9, 2019 at 08:31 AM, LJ Friedman wrote:
I thought pergolide was a benign medication.
Not really. It was a treatment for humans also taken in conjunction with another drug, and there were a number of not insignificant side effects.

Here are the warnings. As the article mentions, the patient population was relatively older and medically fragile, so side effects were not unexpected.
Overdose is described further down on the page.
Cass for Cayuse (PPID/IR) and Diamond (IR)
Sonoma County, Calif. Oct. '12

Cayuse Case History                Cayuse Photos
Diamond Case History              Diamond Photos

Deirdre O'Malley

Sharon , I'm so sorry you had to go through this! Wishing you a full and speedy recovery. I did a similar thing with my mare, Kesa's Pracend pill. But it was only 1 mg. I posted the story on here. Like your experience, the ER staff knew nothing about what to do. 
Deirdre O'Malley 
Raleigh, North Carolina
Joined Group: 6/27/16 
Horse:  KESA, Spanish Mustang mare, 20 yes old

hinecedark <hinecedark@...>

Oh Sharon! I am so, so sorry this has happened to you! And thankful from the bottom of my heart that you first survived it, then have been so courageous as to relate this experience to the rest of us. It is a reminder I'm sure we all need, as you're not the only one who has to multi-task at times. Our horses' pergolide becomes such a routine for us that I'm sure many of us don't give it the respect and caution that we might and should. You have probably saved at least one someone else from a similar awful experience, or worse. 
Again, many, many thanks. You have caused one owner to give a lot more thought when dosing my horse.
Melinda and Cato
IN  2010

ferne fedeli

My Basset Hound (not the current one, but the prior one), ate a pergolide capsule in a piece of carrot (my Bassets all seem to love carrots) and I was so freaked out, I had to drive her 2 hours to the emergency clinic and they kept her overnight, too late to pump her stomach, etc.  Anyway, it cost me a bundle, but all was well in the end.  I think it was back in the 1mg days also.

Ferne Fedeli

No. California

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Cindy Q

Thank you for sharing this warning Sharon. So sorry you had to go through this. But thank God for throwing it up as much as you could and also finally getting the right doctor/neuro to attend. But that ER doctor is a dolt.
Cindy - Sep 2017, Singapore