armodafinil

Armodafinil Oral (Nuvigil®) : Uses & Side Effects

Why is Armodafinil medication prescribed?

Armodafinil is a medication prescribed to improve wakefulness in people with excessive sleepiness due to narcolepsy, obstructive sleep apnea/hypopnea syndrome, and shift work sleep disorder. It may also be prescribed off-label for other conditions such as chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. Armodafinil is a more potent medication than modafinil and has a longer half-life, which means it stays in the body for a longer time. It is typically taken in the morning. Possible side effects include headache, nausea, dizziness, and insomnia.

How should this medicine be used?

Armodafinil should be taken orally once a day in the morning. Follow your doctor’s instructions on how to take this medication. Swallow the tablet whole – do not break, chew, or crush it. You may drink water while taking armodafinil, but avoid drinking grapefruit juice.

What are the possible side effects of this medication?

Armodafinil may cause side effects such as headache, nausea, dizziness, and insomnia. It is important to speak with your doctor if you experience any of these side effects.

Is this medication safe for me to take?

Armodafinil is a more potent medication than modafinil and has a longer half-life, which means it stays in the body for a longer time. It is typically taken in the morning. Speak with your doctor before taking armodafinil to make sure it is the best treatment option for you. Armodafinil should not be taken by people with liver disease, severe sleep apnea, or pregnancy.

What special precautions should I follow?

Follow your doctor’s instructions on how to take this medication. Swallow the tablet whole – do not break, chew, or crush it. You may drink water while taking armodafinil, but avoid drinking grapefruit juice.

Armodafinil should not be taken by people with liver disease, severe sleep apnea, or pregnancy.

Are there any other warnings or precautions I should know about?

This medication can cause dizziness, so avoid driving or operating heavy machinery until you know how armodafinil affects you. It is also important to avoid drinking alcohol while taking this medication.

Does this medication have any interactions with other drugs I am taking?

Armodafinil may interact with other medications you are taking such as antidepressants, antifungal medications, and HIV medications. It is important to speak with your doctor before taking armodafinil to make sure it is the best treatment option for you. Armodafinil should not be taken by people with liver disease, severe sleep apnea, or pregnancy.

What are the possible storage conditions for this medication?

Store armodafinil at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.

What side effects can this medication cause?

Armodafinil may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:

  • headache
  • dizziness
  • difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • difficulty concentrating or paying attention
  • uncontrollable shaking of a part of the body
  • numbness, burning, or tingling of the hands or feet
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • heartburn
  • stomach pain
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • loss of appetite
  • thirst
  • dry mouth
  • sweating
  • frequent urination

Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms, call your doctor immediately:

  • rash
  • blisters
  • peeling skin
  • mouth sores
  • hives
  • itching
  • swelling of the eyes, face, lips, tongue, throat, hands, arms, feet, ankles, or lower legs
  • hoarseness
  • difficulty breathing or swallowing
  • weakness
  • chest pain
  • pounding or irregular heartbeat
  • frenzied, abnormally excited mood
  • hallucinating (seeing things or hearing voices that do not exist)
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • thinking about killing or harming yourself

Armodafinil may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.

In case of emergency/overdose

What should I do if I overdose on this medication?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.

Symptoms of an armodafinil overdose may include:

  • agitation
  • difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep
  • restlessness
  • disorientation
  • confusion
  • hallucinating (seeing things or hearing voices that do not exist)
  • nausea
  • diarrhea
  • fast or slow heartbeat
  • chest pain

What other information should I know?

Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor may order certain lab tests to check your response to armodafinil.

Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.

Armodafinil Brand names

  • Nuvigil®

Source:

T. Partonen, in Reference Module in Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Psychology, 2017

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