One should definitely be informed about potential Provigil side effects before taking the drug. Provigil, the commercial brand of the chemical modafinil, is a drug approved for the treatment of various sleep disorders. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of Provigil only for the treatments of shift work sleep disorder, sleep apnea, and narcolepsy. There are a number of possible Provigil side effects that any patient ought to be aware of.
- Anxiety. In clinical trials where patients took 1200 mg a day for 7-21 days, an increased prevalence of anxious behavior, insomnia, and agitation were observed. Reported irritability is not a life-threatening effect of Provigil doses.
- Confusion. Going along with the observed increased in anxiety, patients in the same study were seen to be more easily confused. Instances of nervousness and confusion are not necessarily a cause for alarm, but tell your doctor if these symptoms persist.
- Nausea. Nauseousness is common in patients receiving doses of modafinil. Related symptoms to nausea (e.g. constipation, excess gas, diarrhea) are also well documented side effects of Provigil.
- Headache. Comparatively minor in relation to side effects such as hallucinations and suicidal thoughts, a headache is a common side effect of Provigil. Any headache that is severe or does not go away should immediately be reported.
- Difficulty moving. Confusingly, the National Center for Biotech Information's PubMed has not labeled this side effect under the "serious" category. Nonetheless, patients are warned that any prolonged sensation of tight muscles, uncontrollable shaking, and otherwise difficult moving ought to be treated as severe and urgent in nature.
- Rashes. A rash is a serious side effect of Provigil, so please call your doctor immediately if you or someone you know has them after taking the medicine. Rashes, blisters, mouth sores, and peeling skin ought to be understood as urgently needing of medical attention.
- Hives. If a patient taking Provigil is experiencing hives or itching, immediately contact emergency services or a doctor. This is a severe dermatological reaction with modafinil, and is well known and warned about by the FDA.
- Difficulty breathing. Patients with difficulty breathing or swallowing (on any medicine, for that matter) need to contact emergency services right away. This is life-threatening and must be immediately dealt with, along with any swelling that might indicate an allergic reaction.
- Severe depression. Thoughts of suicide and/or severe depression constitute a serious, adverse side effect of Provigil. Call your doctor or a suicide hotline if you or someone you know is severely depressed. Serious, uncontrollable cases of anxiety/panic also need to be dealt with by a trained medical professional as soon as possible.
- Hallucinations. Auditory hallucinations (hearing things that are not there) and/or visual hallucinations (seeing things that are not there) are major adverse effects of Provigil. Contact a doctor immediately if anyone is experiencing hallucinations while taking this medication.
Provigil is a drug that works for many people, but only you and your doctor can decide if doses of modafinil are right for you. The above information concerning Provigil side effects was intended to be purely informative in nature, and absolutely not meant to replace the advice of a trained, licensed medical health professional. If you have any questions concerning Provigil, direct them towards your physician and/or pharmacist. Remember, if anyone you know is experiencing serious side effects of modafinil do not be afraid to contact emergency services.