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Ambien

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Ambien

Ambien Side Effects Center

Pharmacy author: Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

Ambien (zolpidem) belongs to a class of drugs called sedatives or hypnotics. Ambien (zolpidem) is used for treating insomnia. A generic formulation is available. The most common side effects of Ambien (zolpidem) are drowsiness, dizziness, and a "drugged" feeling. Other side effects include confusion, insomnia, euphoria, ataxia (balance problems), and visual changes. Ambien (zolpidem) can cause withdrawal symptoms (muscle cramps, sweats, shaking, and seizures). The recommended adult dose of Ambien (zolpidem) is 10 mg as conventional tablets or spray or 12.5 mg as extended-release tablets. Alcohol has an additive effect with Ambien (zolpidem) and the two should not be combined. Ambien (zolpidem) should not be combined with other sedative drugs because of the additive effects. Sporanox (itraconazole) and ketoconazole may increase the blood concentration of Ambien (zolpidem). Rifadin, Rimactane (rifampin) may reduce the concentration of Ambien (zolpidem). There are no adequate studies of Ambien (zolpidem) use in pregnant women. Ambien (zolpidem) is excreted in human breast milk and may adversely affect the infant.

Our Ambien (zolpidem) Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is Patient Information in Detail?

Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.

Ambien in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects

Zolpidem may cause a severe allergic reaction. Stop taking zolpidem and get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Report any new or worsening symptoms to your doctor, such as: depression, anxiety, aggression, agitation, confusion, unusual thoughts, hallucinations, memory problems, changes in personality, risk-taking behavior, decreased inhibitions, no fear of danger, or thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself.

Stop using zolpidem and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • chest pain, fast or irregular heartbeat, feeling short of breath;
  • trouble breathing or swallowing; or
  • feeling like you might pass out.

Common side effects may include:

  • daytime drowsiness, dizziness, weakness, feeling "drugged" or light-headed;
  • tired feeling, loss of coordination;
  • stuffy nose, dry mouth, nose or throat irritation;
  • nausea, constipation, diarrhea, upset stomach; or
  • headache, muscle pain.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Ambien (Zolpidem Tartrate) »

What is Patient Information Overview?

A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.

Ambien Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects

SIDE EFFECTS: Dizziness may occur. If this effect persists or worsens, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

This medication may make you sleepy during the day. Tell your doctor if you have daytime drowsiness. Your dose may need to be adjusted.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: memory loss, mental/mood/behavior changes (such as new/worsening depression, abnormal thoughts, thoughts of suicide, hallucinations, confusion, agitation, aggressive behavior, anxiety).

Rarely, after taking this drug, people have gotten out of bed and driven vehicles while not fully awake ("sleep-driving"). People have also sleepwalked, prepared/eaten food, made phone calls, or had sex while not fully awake. Often, these people do not remember these events. This problem can be dangerous to you or to others. If you find out that you have done any of these activities after taking this medication, tell your doctor right away. Your risk is increased if you use alcohol or other medications that can make you drowsy while taking zolpidem.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Read the entire patient information overview for Ambien (Zolpidem Tartrate)»

What is Prescribing information?

The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.

Ambien FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
(Adverse Reactions)

SIDE EFFECTS

The following serious adverse reactions are discussed in greater detail in other sections of the labeling:

  • CNS-depressant effects and next-day impairment [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Serious anaphylactic and anaphylactoid reactions [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Abnormal thinking and behavior changes, and complex behaviors [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Withdrawal effects [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]

Clinical Trials Experience

Associated With Discontinuation Of Treatment

Approximately 4% of 1,701 patients who received zolpidem at all doses (1.25 to 90 mg) in U.S. premarketing clinical trials discontinued treatment because of an adverse reaction. Reactions most commonly associated with discontinuation from U.S. trials were daytime drowsiness (0.5%), dizziness (0.4%), headache (0.5%), nausea (0.6%), and vomiting (0.5%).

Approximately 4% of 1,959 patients who received zolpidem at all doses (1 to 50 mg) in similar foreign trials discontinued treatment because of an adverse reaction. Reactions most commonly associated with discontinuation from these trials were daytime drowsiness (1.1%), dizziness/vertigo (0.8%), amnesia (0.5%), nausea (0.5%), headache (0.4%), and falls (0.4%).

Data from a clinical study in which selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)-treated patients were given zolpidem revealed that four of the seven discontinuations during double-blind treatment with zolpidem (n=95) were associated with impaired concentration, continuing or aggravated depression, and manic reaction; one patient treated with placebo (n =97) was discontinued after an attempted suicide.

Most Commonly Observed Adverse Reactions In Controlled Trials

During short-term treatment (up to 10 nights) with AMBIEN at doses up to 10 mg, the most commonly observed adverse reactions associated with the use of zolpidem and seen at statistically significant differences from placebo-treated patients were drowsiness (reported by 2% of zolpidem patients), dizziness (1%), and diarrhea (1%). During longer-term treatment (28 to 35 nights) with zolpidem at doses up to 10 mg, the most commonly observed adverse reactions associated with the use of zolpidem and seen at statistically significant differences from placebo-treated patients were dizziness (5%) and drugged feelings (3%).

Adverse Reactions Observed At An Incidence Of ≥ 1% In Controlled Trials

The following tables enumerate treatment-emergent adverse reactions frequencies that were observed at an incidence equal to 1% or greater among patients with insomnia who received zolpidem tartrate and at a greater incidence than placebo in U.S. placebo-controlled trials. Events reported by investigators were classified utilizing a modified World Health Organization (WHO) dictionary of preferred terms for the purpose of establishing event frequencies. The prescriber should be aware that these figures cannot be used to predict the incidence of side effects in the course of usual medical practice, in which patient characteristics and other factors differ from those that prevailed in these clinical trials. Similarly, the cited frequencies cannot be compared with figures obtained from other clinical investigators involving related drug products and uses, since each group of drug trials is conducted under a different set of conditions. However, the cited figures provide the physician with a basis for estimating the relative contribution of drug and nondrug factors to the incidence of side effects in the population studied.

The following table was derived from results of 11 placebo-controlled short-term U.S. efficacy trials involving zolpidem in doses ranging from 1.25 to 20 mg. The table is limited to data from doses up to and including 10 mg, the highest dose recommended for use.

Incidence of Treatment-Emergent Adverse Experiences in Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials Lasting up to 10 Nights (Percentage of patients reporting)

Body System/ Adverse Event* Zolpidem ( ≤ 10 mg)
(N=685)
Placebo
(N=473)
Central and Peripheral Nervous System
  Headache 7 6
  Drowsiness 2 -
  Dizziness 1 -
Gastrointestinal System
  Diarrhea 1 -
*Reactions reported by at least 1% of patients treated with AMBIEN and at a greater frequency than placebo.

The following table was derived from results of three placebo-controlled long-term efficacy trials involving AMBIEN (zolpidem tartrate). These trials involved patients with chronic insomnia who were treated for 28 to 35 nights with zolpidem at doses of 5, 10, or 15 mg. The table is limited to data from doses up to and including 10 mg, the highest dose recommended for use. The table includes only adverse events occurring at an incidence of at least 1% for zolpidem patients.

Incidence of Treatment-Emergent Adverse Experiences in Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials Lasting up to 35 Nights (Percentage of patients reporting)

Body System/ Adverse Event* Zolpidem ( ≤ 10 mg)
(N=152)
Placebo
(N=161)
Autonomic Nervous System
  Dry mouth 3 1
Body as a Whole
  Allergy 4 1
  Back Pain 3 2
  Influenza-like symptoms 2 -
  Chest pain 1 -
Cardiovascular System
  Palpitation 2 -
Central and Peripheral Nervous System
  Drowsiness 8 5
  Dizziness 5 1
  Lethargy 3 1
  Drugged feeling 3 -
  Lightheadedness 2 1
  Depression 2 1
  Abnormal dreams 1 -
  Amnesia 1 -
  Sleep disorder 1 -
Gastrointestinal System
  Diarrhea 3 2
  Abdominal pain 2 2
  Constipation 2 1
Respiratory System
  Sinusitis 4 2
  Pharyngitis 3 1
Skin and Appendages
  Rash 2 1
*Reactions reported by at least 1% of patients treated with AMBIEN and at a greater frequency than placebo.

Dose Relationship For Adverse Reactions

There is evidence from dose comparison trials suggesting a dose relationship for many of the adverse reactions associated with zolpidem use, particularly for certain CNS and gastrointestinal adverse events.

Adverse Event Incidence Across The Entire Preapproval Database

AMBIEN was administered to 3,660 subjects in clinical trials throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe. Treatment-emergent adverse events associated with clinical trial participation were recorded by clinical investigators using terminology of their own choosing. To provide a meaningful estimate of the proportion of individuals experiencing treatment-emergent adverse events, similar types of untoward events were grouped into a smaller number of standardized event categories and classified utilizing a modified World Health Organization (WHO) dictionary of preferred terms.

The frequencies presented, therefore, represent the proportions of the 3,660 individuals exposed to zolpidem, at all doses, who experienced an event of the type cited on at least one occasion while receiving zolpidem. All reported treatment-emergent adverse events are included, except those already listed in the table above of adverse events in placebo-controlled studies, those coding terms that are so general as to be uninformative, and those events where a drug cause was remote. It is important to emphasize that, although the events reported did occur during treatment with AMBIEN, they were not necessarily caused by it.

Adverse events are further classified within body system categories and enumerated in order of decreasing frequency using the following definitions: frequent adverse events are defined as those occurring in greater than 1/100 subjects; infrequent adverse events are those occurring in 1/100 to 1/1,000 patients; rare events are those occurring in less than 1/1,000 patients.

Autonomic nervous system: Infrequent: increased sweating, pallor, postural hypotension, syncope. Rare: abnormal accommodation, altered saliva, flushing, glaucoma, hypotension, impotence, increased saliva, tenesmus.

Body as a whole: Frequent: asthenia. Infrequent: edema, falling, fatigue, fever, malaise, trauma. Rare: allergic reaction, allergy aggravated, anaphylactic shock, face edema, hot flashes, increased ESR, pain, restless legs, rigors, tolerance increased, weight decrease.

Cardiovascular system: Infrequent: cerebrovascular disorder, hypertension, tachycardia. Rare: angina pectoris, arrhythmia, arteritis, circulatory failure, extrasystoles, hypertension aggravated, myocardial infarction, phlebitis, pulmonary embolism, pulmonary edema, varicose veins, ventricular tachycardia.

Central and peripheral nervous system: Frequent: ataxia, confusion, euphoria, headache, insomnia, vertigo Infrequent: agitation, anxiety, decreased cognition, detached, difficulty concentrating, dysarthria, emotional lability, hallucination, hypoesthesia, illusion, leg cramps, migraine, nervousness, paresthesia, sleeping (after daytime dosing), speech disorder, stupor, tremor. Rare: abnormal gait, abnormal thinking, aggressive reaction, apathy, appetite increased, decreased libido, delusion, dementia, depersonalization, dysphasia, feeling strange, hypokinesia, hypotonia, hysteria, intoxicated feeling, manic reaction, neuralgia, neuritis, neuropathy, neurosis, panic attacks, paresis, personality disorder, somnambulism, suicide attempts, tetany, yawning.

Gastrointestinal system: Frequent: dyspepsia, hiccup, nausea. Infrequent: anorexia, constipation, dysphagia, flatulence, gastroenteritis, vomiting. Rare: enteritis, eructation, esophagospasm, gastritis, hemorrhoids, intestinal obstruction, rectal hemorrhage, tooth caries.

Hematologic and lymphatic system: Rare: anemia, hyperhemoglobinemia, leukopenia, lymphadenopathy, macrocytic anemia, purpura, thrombosis.

Immunologic system: Infrequent: infection. Rare: abscess herpes simplex herpes zoster, otitis externa, otitis media.

Liver and biliary system: Infrequent: abnormal hepatic function, increased SGPT. Rare: bilirubinemia, increased SGOT.

Metabolic and nutritional: Infrequent: hyperglycemia, thirst. Rare: gout, hypercholesteremia, hyperlipidemia, increased alkaline phosphatase, increased BUN, periorbital edema.

Musculoskeletal system: Frequent: arthralgia, myalgia. Infrequent: arthritis. Rare: arthrosis, muscle weakness, sciatica, tendinitis.

Reproductive system: Infrequent: menstrual disorder, vaginitis. Rare: breast fibroadenosis, breast neoplasm, breast pain.

Respiratory system: Frequent: upper respiratory infection, lower respiratory infection.

Infrequent: bronchitis, coughing, dyspnea, rhinitis. Rare: bronchospasm, respiratory depression, epistaxis, hypoxia, laryngitis, pneumonia.

Skin and appendages: Infrequent: pruritus. Rare: acne, bullous eruption, dermatitis, furunculosis, injection-site inflammation, photosensitivity reaction, urticaria.

Special senses: Frequent: diplopia, vision abnormal. Infrequent: eye irritation, eye pain, scleritis, taste perversion, tinnitus. Rare: conjunctivitis, corneal ulceration, lacrimation abnormal, parosmia, photopsia.

Urogenital system: Frequent: urinary tract infection. Infrequent: cystitis, urinary incontinence. Rare: acute renal failure, dysuria, micturition frequency, nocturia, polyuria, pyelonephritis, renal pain, urinary retention.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Ambien (Zolpidem Tartrate) »

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Ambien - User Reviews

Ambien User Reviews

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Here is a collection of user reviews for the medication Ambien sorted by most helpful. Patient Discussions FAQs

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

 

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.


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