by on September 23, 2023

Modafinil Australia is an oral medication that has demonstrated efficacy in promoting wakefulness in narcolepsy and SWSD studies. It also appears to improve sleep latency compared with placebo. Narcolepsy is a neurologic disorder characterized by excessive daytime somnolence, cataplexy, sleep paralysis, and hypnagogic hallucinations during the onset of and emergence from sleep. Current pharmacologic therapy includes nap therapy and central nervous system stimulants such as dextroamphetamine and methylphenidate.


People with narcolepsy experience extreme daytime sleepiness, and sometimes fall asleep in inappropriate situations like meetings or classes. Mild cases can be managed with regular naps, but severe narcolepsy is best treated with drugs that stimulate the nervous system, like amphetamines and methylphenidate. Modafinil has been shown to improve narcoleptic patients’ ability to stay awake and increase their cognitive performance without causing the jittery side effects of other stimulants.

Narcolepsy can cause sudden episodes of sleepiness and cataplexy (loss of muscle control). This disorder can be dangerous if it happens while driving or operating machinery, and it can lead to work-related accidents and problems maintaining relationships. It can also cause depression in some affected individuals.

The effectiveness of modafinil for treating narcolepsy was established in two U.S. multicenter, placebo-controlled, double-blind studies. Patients with narcolepsy and satisfactory historical nocturnal polysomnography and multiple sleep latency tests were randomized to receive either 200 mg of modafinil once daily or a placebo for nine weeks. Both once-daily and split doses of modafinil proved to be superior to placebo in prolonging wakefulness during the waking day.

Modafinil is the first drug to show efficacy in narcolepsy and the only non-amphetamine, non-methylphenidate agent to show improvement in the duration of wakefulness during the waking day. It is not effective in improving alertness or vigilance in healthy, narcolepsy-free subjects.

Obstructive Sleep Apnea

Modafinil, also known as Modalert 200 Australia, is an effective treatment for excessive daytime sleepiness in patients with narcolepsy and other conditions associated with EDS (including obstructive sleep apnea/hypopnea syndrome and shift work sleep disorder). In one study (2), both 200 mg and 400 mg of modafinil significantly increased mean sleep latency on the Maintenance of Wakefulness Test and reduced total combined days of extreme sleepiness reported in patient diaries. Modafinil is also effective in reducing residual EDS in patients with obstructive sleep apnea treated with CPAP.

In a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of patients with shift work sleep disorder (3), 200 mg of modafinil given in the morning and 400 mg in divided doses (morning and noon) improved alertness and performance in these patients. This improvement was reflected in the Clinical Global Impression of Change, an assessment used by physicians, and in the ability to sustain attention performance during working hours. Modafinil did not affect sleep architecture in these patients as measured by polysomnography.

Several studies of modafinil in healthy people found that it enhances learning and memory, improves creativity, and increases something called "fluid intelligence" - the capacity to think creatively and solve problems. In addition, it has been shown to reduce the risk of accidents at work and in driving. Modafinil comes as a tablet to take by mouth with or without food, usually once daily in the morning.

Shift Work Sleep Disorder

The sleep problems caused by shift work can be difficult to treat with other medications, including those used to promote alertness during the day or to induce sleep when it is time for bed. For a patient to be diagnosed with Shift Work Sleep Disorder (SWSD), they must report recurring symptoms of excessive sleepiness and fatigue while at work that do not dissipate when their schedule returns to a normal sleeping pattern. The patient must also have documented disturbed sleep patterns with actigraphy and/or by sleep logging, and the symptoms must be present for at least three months. In some cases, SWSD can be eliminated with changes in the patients’ work schedules, but this is not always possible or feasible for those who must work shifts at all.

In a 12-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, patients with chronic SWSD were randomly assigned to receive 200 mg of modafinil (Provigil) or an identical-appearing placebo taken 30 to 60 minutes before their night shifts. Efficacy was measured by patient diaries and measures of performance and functioning (FOSQ, 36-item Short Form Health Survey).

Treatment with modafinil significantly reduced the extreme sleepiness observed in patients with SWSD compared to placebo and resulted in improvements in patient functioning and quality of life. However, the residual sleepiness in this underrecognized patient population indicates a need for more effective interventions.

Other Conditions

There is no cure for narcolepsy, but treatment can improve symptoms and minimize their impact on the quality of life. Lifestyle changes and medications can help, but in severe cases, doctors can also prescribe modafinil, available from a UK pharmacy under the brand name Provigil. It is important to tell your doctor about any medicines you are taking that can make you sleepy or affect your drowsiness, as it can interact with some. This includes over-the-counter medicines, such as cold and allergy medicines.

Modafinil is a wakefulness-promoting drug that has been used since the late 1980s. It is a member of the family of benzhydryl sulfinylacetamides and chemically unrelated to, and pharmacologically distinct from traditional psychostimulants such as dextroamphetamine and methylphenidate.

It is effective in controlling the excessive daytime sleepiness of narcolepsy and idiopathic hypersomnolence, and it was approved by the FDA as a treatment for narcolepsy in 1998 after two large trials. It is also being studied for the treatment of obstructive sleep apnea and fatigue in multiple sclerosis.

However, if a patient presents with EDS in the presence of suspected or proven obstructive sleep apnea, a polysomnogram should be ordered before prescribing this medication. Suppressing a patient’s EDS with medication before a diagnosis has been confirmed could obscure the signs of underlying sleep apnea and lead to serious health consequences.


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