It treats excessive sleepiness in patients. It does it by altering dopamine levels in the patient’s brain. This way, they can improve wakefulness. It is also known as Modafinil and classified as a nootropic. Therefore, they are supplements used to improve cognitive function, mainly executive functions. Sometimes, users may face some unwanted results. Let’s explore the many different Provigil side effects.
What are the Side Effects of Provigil?
Provigil is like any other medication. As a result, it can cause side effects that can range from common to severe. The most common Provigil side effects include:
- Dry mouth
- Infection of the upper respiratory tract
- More serious side effects include:
- Skin conditions
- Difficulty breathing or swallowing
- Shortness of breath
- Yellowing of the skin
- Whites of the eyes
- Dark urine
Sometimes, provigil can cause anaphylaxis, which can be life-threatening. Anaphylaxis is a severe allergic reaction that affects the whole body. In addition, it is the same reaction that someone with a nut or shellfish allergy will have. The most extreme form is an anaphylactic shock. This is when the body’s immune system reacts negatively to a substance. A sudden release of chemical substances causes it. Therefore, usually, this results in a trip to the emergency room.
The FDA’s Medical Guide for Provigil states that it can also have harmful mental side effects, such as:
- Hallucinations (feeling, sensing, seeing objects that aren’t really present)
- Mania (extreme increase in activity)
- Aggressive behavior
- Thoughts of suicide
- Other mental disorders
Provigil and Children
Provigil is not approved for use by children. The FDA’s Medication Guide states that side effects in children included:
- Argumentative behaviour
- Abrupt loss of muscle tone and severe muscle weakness
- Increase in hallucinations while falling asleep
- Painful menstrual cramps in teenagers
- Low white blood count
- Tourette’s syndrome
What are the Most Common Provigil Side Effects?
Let’s take a quick look at some of the common Provigil side effects:
You may develop some unpleasant skin conditions while taking Provigil. This is according to the prescribing leaflet. For example, they can include:
- Skin rash
- Sores in the mouth
- Skin blister
- Skin peels
Among several other Provigil Side Effects, a patient can also develop Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. Harvard.edu states that Stevens-Johnson Syndrome is an acute disease. They cause the blistering of the mucous membranes and skin. As a result, it can lead to acute inflammation or the ocular surface. However, when not properly treated, leads to chronic ocular sequelae. This is the damaging of the ocular surface, and even corneal scarring.
Provigil can cause swelling of the face, eyes, lips, tongue or throat. These can just be an unpleasant experience. On the other hand, it could be way more serious. It could be a sign of anaphylaxis, as mentioned above. This could be potentially life-threatening. Therefore, if you experience any form of swelling, consult a healthcare provider immediately. Or even better, make a trip to the emergency room, just to be on the safe side.
Difficulty Swallowing or Breathing
Also, treat a symptom of anaphylaxis, with the same severity. If not treated, a shortness of breath can lead to the loss of consciousness. According to aaaai.gov, this is one of the most dangerous symptoms. Consult your doctor immediately if you experience difficulty when breathing.
Difficulty swallowing could be serious or caused by dryness of the mouth. This is something many users have complained about. When taking Provigil, they get what they call ‘’cotton mouth’’. This have affected up to 4% of the people during the clinical trials. Therefore, try sipping on water or drinks that don’t contain sugar or caffeine. However, if it persists, consult your doctor.
Shortness of Breath
One of the more serious Provigil side effects is shortness of breath. This ties in with difficulty to breathe. Shortness of breath can cause loss of consciousness. Therefore, you may experience a shortness of breath after taking Provigil. If this happens, consult a healthcare practitioner immediately.
Although typically observed in children, febrile seizures can also occur in adults. These seizures are more likely to occur under certain conditions. For example, it can be when the body’s temperature rises higher than 102˚ F. This is especially when the rise seems sudden. In other words, a fever can be more than just a high temperature, it can be fatal.
Swelling of the Legs
The swelling of legs is usually caused by the accumulation of fluid. It could be a symptom of heart failure. A reduced blood flow to the heart causes this. It causes the blood that returns to the heart to back up in the veins. |As a result, it leads to fluid accumulation and congestion. Do you notice swelling of any sorts after taking Provigil? Consult a healthcare practitioner immediately.
Yellowing of the skin and whites of the eyes can occur when you take Provigil. It can cause drug-induced immune hemolytic anemia (DIIHA). DIHHA as an extremely rare blood disorder estimated to occur in one in every one million people.
DIIHA occurs when the drug makes your immune system to falsely identify its own red blood cells as ‘’foreign invaders’’. Therefore, it uses antibodies to attack it and break down too early.
Although extremely rare, this can occur when using Provigil. As a result, you might end up needing to use a different medication to treat this. In extreme cases, you may need a special blood transfusion to treat severe symptoms of DIIHA.
Darkening of the urine can be some of the common Provigil side effects, such as dehydration. Sometimes, it can be linked to the more serious side effects, such as yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes. You should consult a medical practitioner when blood is visible in your urine. Also, do that if you notice that your urine is extremely dark or orange. It may be a sign that your liver is malfunctioning.
10% of students admitted to taking drugs like Provigil to enhance their concentration. This is according to a survey by the University of Cambridge paper, Varsity. One of the students said that ‘’smart pills’’ were a regular part of his study routine. He added that there were stickers at the campus library. It was offering Provigil (Modafinil) for sale. He reported that it would make his heart race. Only later, after taking Provigil constantly for a month, he began to notice some side effects. He explained it also took its toll on his relationships. This is on top of the physical Provigil side effects. He had constant mood swings and became irritable. He started to dislike being around people.
Overdose and Contraindications
Despite several Provigil side effects, it hasn’t been lethal. This is especially when compared with some other drugs. They conducted clinical studies of overdose at ranges of 1000 through 1600 mg/day. This is with a small number participates orally receiving doses as high as 4500 mg.
Even so, they did not observe life-threatening effects. The range of effects included:
- mild to moderate elevations in blood pressure
- disturbed sleeping patterns
- reduced rate of blood-clotting
No clinical trials have, to date, established contraindications with Provigil. There are some other reported side effects when they used Provigil with other drugs. They include all the effects from above. In addition, they also included:
- cardiovascular changes including bradycardia (lowered heart rate) tachycardia (increased heart rate)
- chest pain
The effects of accidental ingestion of Provigil by children are like those of adults. This is in one case where the child was as young as 11 months.
Importance of a Prescription
It is imperative to consult with a healthcare practitioner before using Provigil.