Mom, who has suffered horrific burns to more than half of her body, claims that a daily $ 6 medication “made her set herself on fire” – because she warns others of the risk.
- Mom claims that side effects of an addictive prescription painkiller have taken over her life
- Vicky Edwards later set herself on fire, causing burns to 54 percent of her body
- He now wants plans to lead a group action in Australia against drug producers
- Studies have shown that drugs can cause suicidal thoughts in a small percentage of users
A burn survivor spoke about the psychological trauma she suffered after going on a common anticonvulsant drug, and at night she caught fire and suffered horrific injuries.
Victoria’s mother Vicky Edwards is one of millions of Australians who have been prescribed the drug, originally used to treat patients with epilepsy and nerve pain but was later used to treat other chronic conditions.
Ms Edwards, 48, claims the drug took over her life within weeks of using it and claims it set her on fire.
She suffered horrific burns to 54 percent of her body and spent two months in a coma.
Nearly 18 months and 15 operations later, she now wants to share her story.
Vicky Edwards pictured before she suffered burns to 54 percent of her body in January 2021
“I felt like I was going to get into a big, deep hole and couldn’t get out.” she told A Current Affair.
The scars are a painful reminder of what she went through and a source of deep regret.
‘I see disgust. I don’t like my face. I miss my face, ‘said Mrs. Edwards.
‘I see someone different, someone else’s face. It’s not mine. ‘
She was originally prescribed the drug in late 2020 to treat three swollen discs in her spine and claims she was psychologically transformed within six weeks.
‘I just wasn’t myself and it all cost me. Things that came out of my mouth were not even me, she said.
By January 2021, her life was spiraling out of control.
“I hit the hallway and I said to my girls, ‘We’re all going to kill ourselves, it’s all over,'” Mrs. Edwards recalled.
‘My poor children were hysterical.’
Vicky (pictured) spent months in hospital covered in head-to-toe bandages after she caught fire and will soon undergo her 16th surgery within 18 months.
She still vividly remembers that she set herself on fire early one Sunday morning.
“I set myself on fire and ran outside with fire … screaming,” said Mrs. Edwards.
– I don’t remember the pain and my neighbor came out because I was screaming. No one would go so far as to take their own life as I did.
‘It’s just awful to think that someone would do this on purpose.’
She spent months in a hospital covered in bandages from head to toe, in great pain and unable to move.
Her recovery will last for the rest of her life but she refuses to believe she tried to take her own life, claiming the medication is to blame.
Vicky shares her story to warn others of the possible side effects
Vicky Edwards says taking the prescribed pain ruined his life and left her scarred
Despite her horrific injuries, she remains strong.
‘I may be burned and broken down but I’m still off the‘ hood ’and that’s what keeps me going.
‘I’m smiling because I’m alive.’
There are growing calls for physicians to educate patients about the higher risk of drug addiction, self-harm, and suicidal thoughts associated with the drug.
“Anyone with any kind of mental health history, anyone with any kind of psychological vulnerability, they seem to be a much bigger risk. [of] self-harming thoughts, suicidal thoughts, attacks of uncontrollable rage that they have never had before, ‘said psychiatrist Dr Tanveer Ahmed.
If you or anyone you know needs support, contact Lifeline at 13 11 14 or Beyond Blue at 1300 224 636.