May 22, 2017
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Seconal Sodium

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Seconal Sodium

Seconal Sodium Patient Information including How Should I Take

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking secobarbital (Seconal Sodium)?

Some people using this medicine have engaged in activity such as driving, and later having no memory of the activity. If this happens to you, stop taking secobarbital and talk with your doctor about another treatment for your sleep disorder.

Do not take this medication if you are allergic to secobarbital, or if you have porphyria.

If you have any of these other conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take secobarbital:

  • severe asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), or other breathing disorder;
  • a blood cell disorder such as anemia (lack of red blood cells);
  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
  • liver disease;
  • heart disease;
  • overactive thyroid;
  • a history of depression, mental illness, or suicide attempt; or
  • a history of drug or alcohol addiction.

Secobarbital may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Secobarbital should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it.

FDA pregnancy category D. This medication can cause harm to an unborn baby. Do not use secobarbital without your doctor's consent if you are pregnant. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment. Use an effective form of birth control while you are using this medication.

Secobarbital can make birth control pills less effective. Ask your doctor about using a non-hormone method of birth control (such as a condom, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy while taking secobarbital.

Secobarbital can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take secobarbital (Seconal Sodium)?

Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

Take secobarbital only when you are getting ready for several hours of sleep. You may fall asleep very quickly after taking the medicine.

Take this medicine with a full glass of water.

If you are taking this medicine to treat insomnia, take it only at bedtime. Do not use secobarbital for longer than 2 weeks to treat insomnia, unless your doctor has told you to.

Do not change your dose of secobarbital without your doctor's advice. Tell your doctor if the medication does not seem to work as well in treating your condition.

Store secobarbital at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

Keep track of how many pills have been used from each new bottle of this medicine. Secobarbital is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if any person in the household is using this medicine improperly or without a prescription.

Side Effects Centers

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.

Sleep Disorders

Get tips for better sleep.