Methaqualone is a sedative that increases the activity of the GABA receptors in the brain and nervous system, similarly to benzodiazepines and barbiturates. When GABA activity is increased, blood pressure drops and breathing and pulse rates slow, leading to a state of deep relaxation. These properties explain why methaqualone was originally mainly prescribed for insomnia.
Methaqualone was not recommended for use while pregnant and is in pregnancy category D.
*Nervous system shutdown