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Help! Medication Woes. Provigil?


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#1 Carolynjoy1228

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 02:23 PM

I've been on 200mg Provigil for about 6 months. Then, last month, my neurologist switched me to 150mg Nuvigil, because I was still falling asleep a lot. At first, I thought it was pretty good, but as it built in my system, I became manic for 5 days. I actually met all of the criteria for Bipolar Mania diagnosis. It was scary.

So, I'm back to Provigil for now. I see the doctor again in 2 weeks.

The main problems: On Provigil, I seem to be almost asleep most of the day, then have a jolt of focused energy for 2-3 hours in the evening. Then, I go back to being a zombie.

Would a higher dosage help with this? Or would it just make my brain even more alert, and my body still almost asleep?

I normally take the pill the second I wake up (around 11). Then, I never feel any tiny amount of energy until at least 5 pm. Then, I'm out of it again by 7 or 8. But my brain seems to be really active at night on Provigil, making it hard to sleep.

I've tried dividing my dose and taking it throughout the day. But if I take it after 3:00, I definitely have trouble sleeping that night.

So, my plan for tomorrow morning is to set my alarm, wake up at 7:00, take my Provigil, hopefully go back to sleep, and then hopefully be alert earlier in the day.

I wonder if I should try another stimulant, one that is a little more fast-acting. Provigil seems to make my mind alert, but my body still SO tired.

I would love your experience with Provigil...what dosage you take, when you take it, how long it takes to start working, and how long it seems to last.

Also, any other meds help you stay awake better than Provigil? Provigil in combination with something else?

My main problem is feeling like a zombie all day, due to overwhelming fatigue, and falling asleep at unusual times. I just need to wake up! If I am unmedicated, I don't have the energy to get off the couch all day.

Thanks for your help!

Carolyn...always almost asleep

#2 Saraiah

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Posted 01 September 2009 - 08:59 PM

Hi Carolyn,

Are you on any other meds in addition to Provigil? I was first prescribed Provigil 200mg 2-3 years ago, which was initially helpful. Now, I'm either asleep or a zombie on 400-600mg of Provigil.

So I guess 6 weeks ago now, I started Xyrem. With a total of 6g of Xyrem per night (and the 4-6 hours of restorative sleep I get from that), if I take 400mg Provigil 1 hour before I get out of bed, I can stay relatively awake and alert all day IF I also take 1-2 2 hour naps during the day. Which is obviously not where I need it to be in order to back to work full time, but it's an improvement.

BTW, I don't really understand why sleep docs seem to put PWN on stimulants first, and only seem to start the Xyrem after we're all either walking zombies or have been fired from our jobs for falling asleep standing up. Why don't they just start by making an effort to solve the basic problem of lack of restorative sleep? Or maybe most sleep docs do start PWN on Xyrem, and I'm just getting an anecdoctally unbalanced picture.

So anyway, have you tried Xyrem, Carolyn?

Cheers,

Saraiah