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Modavigil is fully funded for the treatment of NARCOLEPSY.
What is Narcolepsy?
Narcolepsy is a chronic sleep disorder with no known cause. The main characteristic of narcolepsy is excessive and overwhelming daytime sleepiness, even after adequate nighttime sleep.
People with narcolepsy feel sleepy nearly all the time, and cannot resist going to sleep for a few minutes or up to an hour several times during the day. This abnormal propensity to sleep is referred to as Excessive Daytime Sleepiness by physicians.
Three classic symptoms of narcolepsy, which may not occur in all patients, are: Cataplexy
, which is unique to narcolepsy affects about 9 out of 10 people. Cataplexy is sudden muscle weakness that can range from drooping of the head and face to complete collapse. It is usually triggered by strong emotions, such as laughter, anger, surprise or fear, or by strenuous exercise. Hypnogogic Hallucinations
are intense, vivid dreams, which are often accompanied by frightening auditory, visual and tactile sensations, usually occurring as one is awakening or going to sleep. They are difficult to distinguish from reality.
is the inability to move when awakening or going to sleep. This may be brief, but can also last for several minutes. Multiple attacks may occur. This can be terrifying, especially when occurring with a frightening hypnogogic hallucination.Are there any other common sleep disorders? There are other sleep disorders that make it hard for people to sleep soundly at night – or stay awake during the day.
- Sleep apnoea – when a person stops breathing and then starts again many times a night.
- Chronic insomnia – when a person has trouble falling asleep or staying asleep night after night.
- Restless legs syndrome (RLS) – when a person loses sleep because of a restless feeling in the legs.
Other sleep disorders that cause excessive daytime sleepiness are not eligible for funding so you will need to pay for your medication.
How is Narcolepsy diagnosed?
Narcolepsy is usually diagnosed from symptoms of excessive daytime sleepiness, cataplexy and nighttime sleep disturbances, which can be confirmed by tests carried out in a sleep laboratory. Two tests that are commonly used in diagnosing narcolepsy are the polysomnogram and the multiple sleep latency test. These tests are usually performed by a sleep specialist.
How is Narcolepsy treated?
Although there is no cure for narcolepsy, treatment options are available to help reduce the various symptoms. One of these treatments is MODAVIGIL.
What is Modavigil?
Modavigil is a prescription medicine and is a unique wake-promoting agent for the treatment of excessive daytime sleepiness (commonly called “EDS”) associated with narcolepsy. Modavigil is used to improve wakefulness and has been proven to help patients remain alert and awake during the day and allows them to better participate in daily activities.
How long does it take for Modavigil to work?
Modavigil will begin working within a few hours, increasing your wakefulness. Studies show that taking Modavigil in the morning can help keep you awake throughout the day. Modavigil does not interfere with nighttime sleep when taken as directed.
Can Modavigil cause side effects?
Modavigil is generally well tolerated. However, Modavigil can cause side effects in some people. When side effects do occur with Modavigil they are generally mild and manageable in nature. Headache is the most frequently reported side effect. Other side effects reported were nausea, nervousness, anxiety and insomnia (unable to sleep at night). All medicines have risks and benefits and if you have any concerns or experience any side effects talk to your doctor.
How do I take Modavigil?
It is important that you take Modavigil as directed by your doctor. Your doctor will tell you how much you should take, when and how often. Follow your doctor’s instructions. If you are unsure ask your doctor or pharmacist. Each Modavigil tablet contains 100mg of modafinil. The dose ranges from 200mg to 400mg a day. You should not take your Modavigil tablets later than midday or you may have trouble sleeping at night. VERY IMPORTANT: Modavigil may “interact” with other medications, and can affect the way other drugs work. Make sure your doctor is aware of any other medication you’re taking, or are considering taking, before you start your therapy with Modavigil.
How much does Modavigil cost?
MODAVIGIL is fully funded under Special Authority for anyone who meets the funding criteria. You need to make an appointment with your Neurologist or Respiratory Specialist to see if you qualify. Your doctor will then determine whether you meet the special criteria and if Modavigil is right for you. All you’ll pay are normal doctor’s fees and pharmacy charges.
Do you suffer from excessive sleepiness?
Click on the questionnaire below to help you measure your general level of daytime sleepiness.
MODAVIGIL® (Tablets contain 100 mg of Modafinil)
MODAVIGIL is a funded prescription medicine for patients that meet special medical criteria. Normal doctor’s fees and pharmacy charges will apply.
MODAVIGIL is used to improve wakefulness in people with excessive daytime sleepiness associated with the medical condition known as narcolepsy or with Obstructive Sleep Apnoea/Hypopnoea Syndrome (OSAHS), or shift work sleep disorder (SWSD).MODAVIGIL has benefits and risks. Do not use MODAVIGIL if you are pregnant or likely to become pregnant, or you are allergic to Modafinil or any other component of the product. Tell your doctor if you: are under 18 or over 65 years old; have a history of mental health problems; have a history of alcohol, drug or illicit substance abuse; have heart problems, including, for example, chest pain, previous heart attack, enlarged heart; have an abnormal/irregular heart rhythm; have high blood pressure; have kidney or liver problems; are breastfeeding; are taking any medicines including those for which you needed no prescription. Do not drive or operate machinery until you know how MODAVIGIL affects you. As with any medicine some side effects may occur. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any unpleasant effects or notice any of the following: headache; nausea; diarrhoea; dry mouth; poor appetite; runny nose; sore throat; nervous feeling; dizziness; back pain; feeling anxious; upset stomach; trouble sleeping; fever; shortness of breath; yellowing of the skin or white of the eyes or dark urine; mental (psychiatric) symptoms; chest pain or abnormal heart beats; fits or convulsions; chills; stiff neck; high blood pressure; anorexia; constipation; abnormal liver function; burning, prickling or tingling sensation; increased muscle tone; impaired voluntary movement; abnormally increased muscular function; lung disorder; nose bleed; asthma; abnormal vision; abnormal sense of taste; blood in urine. MODAVIGIL may cause you to have a serious rash. Stop MODAVIGIL and call your doctor right away or get emergency treatment if you have a skin rash; hives; sores in your mouth or your skin blisters and peels; any sudden wheeziness; swelling of your face, eyes, lips, tongue, throat or legs; difficulty in breathing or swallowing; rash or itching (especially affecting the whole body). Always use MODAVIGIL strictly as directed by your doctor. Speak to your doctor to see if MODAVIGIL is right for you.
For further information, consult your doctor. Additional consumer medicine information can be obtained from the Medsafe website
Medsafe website or from Seqirus (NZ) Ltd, PO Box 62 590, Greenlane, Auckland 1546. Freephone 0800 502 757 or
www.seqirus.co.nz MODAVIGIL is a registered trademark owned by Teva, Inc. Based on the MODAVIGIL consumer medicine information dated October 2015.
For further information, click on the helpful links below.
Narcolepsy Support Group of New Zealand
Consumer Medicine Information
Medicine Data Sheet
Last Updated: 23-01-2017