Nuvigil

By Medically reviewed by hellodoktor

Generic Name: Nuvigil Brand Name(s): Nuvigil.

Uses

What is Nuvigil® (armodafinil) used for?

Nuvigil® is used to treat excessive sleepiness caused by sleep apnea, narcolepsy, or shift work sleep disorder.

Nuvigil® may also be used for other purposes.

How should I take Nuvigil® (armodafinil)?

Take Nuvigil® exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Armodafinil may be habit-forming. Never share Nuvigil® with another person, especially someone with a history of drug abuse or addiction. Selling or giving away this medicine is against the law.

Nuvigil® is usually taken each morning to prevent daytime sleepiness, or 1 hour before the start of a work shift to treat work-time sleep disorders.

You may take this medicine with or without food.

Nuvigil® is usually given for up to 12 weeks. Follow your doctor’s instructions.

If you are taking this medicine to treat sleepiness caused by obstructive sleep apnea, you may also be treated with a continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) machine. This machine is an air pump connected to mask that gently blows pressurized air into your nose while you sleep. The pump does not breathe for you, but the gentle force of air helps keep your airway open to prevent obstruction.

Do not stop using your CPAP machine during sleep unless your doctor tells you to. The combination of treatment with CPAP and Nuvigil® may be necessary to best treat your condition.

Taking Nuvigil® does not take the place of getting enough sleep. Talk with your doctor if you continue to have excessive sleepiness even while taking this medicine. Nuvigil® will not cure obstructive sleep apnea or treat its underlying causes. Follow your doctor’s instructions about all your other treatments for this disorder.

How do I store Nuvigil® (armodafinil)?

Nuvigil® is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Nuvigil® in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Nuvigil® that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.

You should not flush Nuvigil® down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.

Precautions & warnings

What should I know before using Nuvigil® (armodafinil)?

Before using this drug, tell your doctor if:

  • You are pregnant or breastfeeding. This is because, while you are expecting or feeding a baby, you should only take medicines on the recommendation of a doctor.
  • You are taking any other medicines. This includes any medicines you are taking which are available to buy without a prescription, such as herbal and complementary medicines.
  • You have allergy with any of active or inactive ingredients of Nuvigil® or other medications.
  • You have any other illnesses, disorders, or medical conditions.

To make sure Nuvigil® is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • Liver or kidney disease
  • A heart muscle or valve disorder such as mitral valve prolapse
  • High blood pressure, heart disease, or prior heart attack
  • A history of mental illness or psychosis
  • A history of drug or alcohol addiction

Use a barrier form of birth control (condom or diaphragm with spermicide). Hormonal contraception (birth control pills, injections, implants, skin patches, and vaginal rings) may not be effective enough to prevent pregnancy during your treatment.

Nuvigil® is not approved for use by anyone younger than 17 years old.

Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?

There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using Nuvigil® during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Nuvigil®. Nuvigil® is pregnancy risk category C, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:

  • A=No risk
  • B=No risk in some studies
  • C=There may be some risk
  • D=Positive evidence of risk
  • X=Contraindicated
  • N=Unknown

Side effects

What side effects can occur from Nuvigil® (armodafinil)?

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Nuvigil®: hives; hoarse voice, difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop taking Nuvigil® and call your doctor at the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how minor you think it might be.

Skin rashes serious enough to require hospitalization have occurred in people using a medicine similar to armodafinil. These rashes usually occurred within 1 to 5 weeks after the first dose.

In rare cases, armodafinil may cause a severe drug reaction that can affect many parts of the body. This type of reaction can start several weeks after you begin using this medicine. Seek medical treatment if you have new or worsening symptoms of fever, facial swelling, a red or blistering skin rash, flu symptoms, swollen glands, feeling weak or tired, severe tingling or numbness, upper stomach pain, loss of appetite, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes), weight loss, pain or burning when you urinate, lower back pain, swelling in your legs or feet, cough, chest pain, or trouble breathing.

Stop using Nuvigil® and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • Bruising, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness
  • Unusual bleeding (nosebleeds, bleeding gums)
  • Skin sores or blistering
  • Mouth sores, trouble swallowing
  • Depression, anxiety, hallucinations, aggression, unusual thoughts or behavior, suicidal thoughts
  • Chest pain, uneven heart beats
  • Severe skin reaction – fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain, followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling

Common side effects may include:

  • Headache, dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Sleep problems (insomnia)

Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

Interactions

What drugs may interact with Nuvigil® (armodafinil)?

Nuvigil® may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.

Does food or alcohol interact with Nuvigil® (armodafinil)?

Nuvigil® may interact with food or alcohol by altering the way the drug works or increase the risk for serious side effects. Please discuss with your doctor or pharmacist any potential food or alcohol interactions before using this drug.

What health conditions may interact with Nuvigil® (armodafinil)?

Nuvigil® may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.

Dosage

The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using Nuvigil® (armodafinil).

What is the dose of Nuvigil® (armodafinil) for an adult?

Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) and Narcolepsy

The recommended dosage for patients with OSA or narcolepsy is 150 mg to 250 mg taken orally once a day as a single dose in the morning.

Shift Work Disorder (SWD)

The recommended dosage for patients with SWD is 150 mg taken orally once a day as a single dose approximately 1 hour prior to the start of their work shift.

What is the dose of Nuvigil® (armodafinil) for a child?

The dosage has not been established in pediatric patients. It may be unsafe for your child. It is always important to fully understand the safety of the drug before using. Please consult with your doctor or pharmacist for more information.

How is Nuvigil® (armodafinil) available?

Nuvigil® is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:

  • Tablet: armodafinil 50mg

What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?

In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose of Nuvigil®, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Review Date: August 21, 2017 | Last Modified: September 13, 2019

Want to live your best life?
Get the Hello Doktor Daily newsletter for health tips, wellness updates and more.
You might also like