Summary: Modafinil (Provigil) is a regulated medication used in the treatment of a variety of sleeping disorders. There are many side effects caused by this drug. Consult your physician if you feel you have a reaction to taking this medication.
Modafinil is a drug used primarily for the treatment of sleep disorders. The generic name of this medication is modafinil. Some of the specific sleep disorders that are treated by this medication include narcolepsy and sleep apnea. The drug is also used to treat other medical conditions under the guidance of a physician. I shall be discussing the side effect and precautions needed when taking this drug.
Modafinil can exhibit mild side effects to the user. These normally do not require immediate medical advice unless they persist for a couple of days or more. The most common include headaches, upset stomach, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. Patients may also complain of drowsiness and anxiety. Some complain of difficulty maintaining sleep. Usually these disappear after a few days on the medication.
Some of the severe side effects of Modafinil that require immediate medical attention include hypertension and severe chest pains. Patients also report to have experienced dyspnea or difficulty of breathing accompanied by an irregular heartbeat. Immediate medical attention must also be warranted if the patient suddenly has severe mood swings accompanied by thoughts of suicide. Other severe side effects of the medication include anaphylactic type symptoms. Report immediately to your doctor if you have skin blisters, fever, tremors and rashes. All patients should stop taking the medication immediately when they experience any of the above.
As a precaution, patients taking this drug should inform their health care professional if they have other medications that they are taking in conjunction with the drug. Patients should need to inform their doctor about any history of liver and kidney disease.
Modafinil must be used with caution in patients that have a history of mental disorders. Breast-feeding women and pregnant women are contraindicated from taking this drug because of the potential dangers to the child.
Modafinil is a regulated drug because of the high probability of dependence or addiction. Physicians should take careful precautions to use this medication judiciously and in the right dosage. Patients need to be monitored for drug interactions especially those with concomitant MAOI medications. Those taking amphetamines as well as women who are using birth control need to be monitored more closely by their attending physician for potential side effects. If the patient starts exhibiting physical and psychological dependence to the drug, the physician needs to be informed immediately. The drug can also exhibit a rare side effect called Stevens-Johnson syndrome wherein there is an appearance of a rash that leads to severe skin peeling.