Excessive daytime sleepiness might indicate that you might have a sleeping condition called narcolepsy. Narcolepsy is a condition where a person experiences excessive sleepiness during daytime hours. One of the treatments prescribed for this type of sleeping disorder is the Modafinil drug.
What is the Modafinil drug?
This drug is considered as a eurogeroic or a wakefulness-promoting agent. It was designed in France around 1970s, and licensed under Cephalon, a US company in the 1990s. The drug was used to treat sleeping disorders such as narcolepsy and shift work disorder. Although it was used in treating sleeping conditions, the medication does not cure the sleeping disorders and is not recommended for use for people who are not getting enough sleep or as a treatment to ward off sleep.
How it Works
It is believed that the drug affects the dopamine transporter, which increases the muscle movement in certain areas of the brain responsible for motivation thus resulting to a “wakefulness effect” on the patient.
The use of the medication may result to mild side effects including feelings of nausea, anxiety, headache, nervousness and insomnia. Some patients may experience serious side effects such as hypersensitivity or serious skin reactions, fainting, psychosis, dizziness, gastrointestinal problems as well as multi-organ sensitivity. Addiction and dependence may also occur due to overdose use of the medication over an extended period or if the patient has a history of drug abuse or dependence.
How Should the Medicine be Taken?
The use of the modafinil drug depends on what type of treatment that one is undergoing. For patients that are diagnosed with narcolepsy, the drug may be taken orally once a day with or without food, usually in the morning. On the other hand, for treatment of shift work sleeping disorder, the physician may prescribe the intake of the drug one hour before the work shift starts.
As the drug may be habit-forming, it is important that patients talk with their health care provider and follow the prescription of the doctor to prevent abuse or dependence. Individuals that have drug allergies or reactions to certain medications should also consult their physician or pharmacist on how to proceed about the medication.
For women who are taking contraceptives or birth control, pregnant or breast-feeding, they should take note of their conditions before taking the medicine. The drug may reduce the effectiveness of the birth control pills and affect pregnancy.
Medical Disclaimer: The information provided is for information purposes only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes. This information is not intended to be patient education, does not create any patient-physician relationship, and should not be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment.