What is this medicine?

MODAFINIL (moe DAF i nil) is used to treat excessive sleepiness caused by certain sleep disorders. This includes narcolepsy, sleep apnea, and shift work sleep disorder.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Provigil

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • history of depression, mania, or other mental disorder
  • kidney disease
  • liver disease
  • an unusual or allergic reaction to modafinil, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • breast-feeding

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often than directed. Do not stop taking except on your doctor's advice.

A special MedGuide will be given to you by the pharmacist with each prescription and refill. Be sure to read this information carefully each time.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. This medicine is not approved for use in children.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medicine?

Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:

  • amphetamine or dextroamphetamine
  • dexmethylphenidate or methylphenidate
  • medicines called MAO Inhibitors like Nardil, Parnate, Marplan, Eldepryl
  • pemoline
  • procarbazine

This medicine may also interact with the following medications:

  • antifungal medicines like itraconazole or ketoconazole
  • barbiturates like phenobarbital
  • birth control pills or other hormone-containing birth control devices or implants
  • carbamazepine
  • cyclosporine
  • diazepam
  • medicines for depression, anxiety, or psychotic disturbances
  • phenytoin
  • propranolol
  • triazolam
  • warfarin

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Visit your doctor or health care provider for regular checks on your progress. The full effects of this medicine may not be seen right away.

This medicine may cause serious skin reactions. They can happen weeks to months after starting the medicine. Contact your health care provider right away if you notice fevers or flu-like symptoms with a rash. The rash may be red or purple and then turn into blisters or peeling of the skin. Or, you might notice a red rash with swelling of the face, lips or lymph nodes in your neck or under your arms.

This medicine may affect your concentration, function, or may hide signs that you are tired. You may get dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this drug affects you. Alcohol can make you more dizzy and may interfere with your response to this medicine or your alertness. Avoid alcoholic drinks.

Birth control pills may not work properly while you are taking this medicine. Talk to your doctor about using an extra method of birth control.

It is unknown if the effects of this medicine will be increased by the use of caffeine. Caffeine is available in many foods, beverages, and medications. Ask your doctor if you should limit or change your intake of caffeine-containing products while on this medicine.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue
  • anxiety
  • breathing problems
  • chest pain
  • fast, irregular heartbeat
  • hallucinations
  • increased blood pressure
  • rash, fever, and swollen lymph nodes
  • redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
  • sore throat, fever, or chills
  • suicidal thoughts or other mood changes
  • tremors
  • vomiting

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • headache
  • nausea, diarrhea, or stomach upset
  • nervousness
  • trouble sleeping

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children. This medicine can be abused. Keep your medicine in a safe place to protect it from theft. Do not share this medicine with anyone. Selling or giving away this medicine is dangerous and against the law.

This medicine may cause accidental overdose and death if taken by other adults, children, or pets. Mix any unused medicine with a substance like cat litter or coffee grounds. Then throw the medicine away in a sealed container like a sealed bag or a coffee can with a lid. Do not use the medicine after the expiration date.

Store at room temperature between 20 and 25 degrees C (68 and 77 degrees F).

NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

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Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy

Cleveland Clinic is a non-profit academic medical center. Advertising on our site helps support our mission. We do not endorse non-Cleveland Clinic products or services. Policy