Nuvigil, otherwise known as Armodafinil, is an
orally taken medication used to treat excessive tiredness, sleep
apnea, or narcolepsy. The drug itself helps promote a sense of
wakefulness. Many people who use this drug tend to be adjusting
to new schedules or shifts at work that require a change in
Nuvigil is produced by the company Cephalon Inc. which the FDA
approved in 2007. The drug comes in 50 mg, 150 mg, and 250 mg
tablets, and a dose of 150 mg is usually recommended.
In trials with the drug involving people who deal with excessive
sleepiness due to shift work disorder, those who took it had an
extreme improvement in wakefulness compared to those who took a
sugar placebo pill. Tests were run throughout the patients'
shifts to determine the level of wakefulness at various times.
The drug also improved the overall condition of the test
subjects compared to those who did not take the medication.
The drug, however, typically does not interfere with a person's
ability to sleep when they actually want to sleep. This drug is
a federally controlled substance because it is possible for
patients to become addicted. To keep dependence from occurring,
it is important to follow dosing instructions as prescribed by
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As with any medication, there are a number of side effects that
could occur while taking Nuvigil. Headaches, dizziness, nausea,
vomiting, and anxiety could occur. While these side effects can
be common, the following effects are not: chest pain, frequent
bruising and bleeding, mental changes, signs of infection, and
irregular heart beat. If any of these symptoms occur, be sure to
talk to your doctor immediately.
Nuvigil should not be taken if one has certain health issues.
Consult your doctor before taking the drug if you have have a
history of heart, liver, or kidney problems. It is not
encouraged for children to take this medication as any side
effects could be intensified.
This drug can also decrease the efficiency of birth control, so
there is an increased chance of becoming pregnant while on the
Cephalon has also been experimenting the effects of Nuvigil to
treat those with bipolar depression. In 2010, the drug was used
along side therapy to treat adults with schizophrenia, but the
trials were ended when expected results were not yielded.
Other unprescribed uses of the medication include treating ADHD,
assisting weight loss, improving cognitive function, helping
mood disorders, and ending cocaine addictions.