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All about: Lunesta

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Generic Name: eszopiclone (e ZOP i klone)
Brand Names: Lunesta

What is eszopiclone?

Eszopiclone is a sedative, also called a hypnotic. It affects chemicals in your brain that may become unbalanced and cause sleep problems (insomnia).

Eszopiclone is used to treat insomnia. This medication causes relaxation to help you fall asleep and stay asleep.

Eszopiclone may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about eszopiclone?

Eszopiclone may cause a severe allergic reaction. Stop taking eszopiclone 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. Eszopiclone will make you fall asleep. Never take this medication during your normal waking hours, unless you have at least 8 hours to dedicate to sleeping.

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

Eszopiclone can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. You may still feel sleepy the morning after taking the medication. Until you know how this medication will affect you during waking hours, be careful if you drive, operate machinery, pilot an airplane, or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert. Do not drink alcohol while you are taking eszopiclone. It can increase some of the side effects of eszopiclone, including drowsiness. Eszopiclone may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Eszopiclone 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.

You may have withdrawal symptoms if you stop taking eszopiclone after taking it over several days in a row. Do not stop taking eszopiclone suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking eszopiclone?

Eszopiclone will make you fall asleep. Never take this medication during your normal waking hours, unless you have at least 8 hours to dedicate to sleeping.

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

Do not use this medication if you are allergic to eszopiclone.

Before taking eszopiclone, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

  • liver disease;
  • sleep apnea (breathing stops while you are asleep);
  • lung disease such as asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, or chronic obstructive pulmonary pulmonary disease (COPD);

  • a history of depression, mental illness, or suicidal thoughts; or

  • a history of drug or alcohol addiction.

If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to use eszopiclone, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Eszopiclone 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.

The sedative effects of eszopiclone may be stronger in older adults. Accidental falls are common in elderly patients who take sedatives. Use caution to avoid falling or accidental injury while you are taking eszopiclone.

Eszopiclone may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Eszopiclone 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.

How should I take eszopiclone?

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 eszopiclone only if you are able to get a full night's sleep before you must be active again. Never take this medication during your normal waking hours, unless you have at least 8 hours to dedicate to sleeping.

Take eszopiclone with a full glass of water.

Avoid taking eszopiclone within 1 hour after eating a high-fat or heavy meal. This will make it harder for your body to absorb the medication.

Eszopiclone is for short-term use only. Tell your doctor if your insomnia symptoms do not improve, or if they get worse after using this medication for 7 to 10 nights in a row. Do not take eszopiclone for longer than 2 weeks without your doctor's advice.

You may have withdrawal symptoms if you stop taking eszopiclone after taking it over several days in a row. Do not stop taking eszopiclone suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely.

Store eszopiclone at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep track of how many capsules have been used from each new bottle of this medicine. Eszopiclone 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.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since eszopiclone is usually taken as needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. Never take this medication if you do not have at least 8 hours to sleep before being active again. Do not take extra medicine to make up a missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. Symptoms of an eszopiclone overdose are not known.

What should I avoid while taking eszopiclone?

Eszopiclone can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. You may still feel sleepy the morning after taking the medication. Until you know how this medication will affect you during waking hours, be careful if you drive, operate machinery, pilot an airplane, or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert. Do not drink alcohol while you are taking eszopiclone. It can increase some of the side effects of eszopiclone, including drowsiness. Do not take other medicines that make you sleepy (such as cold medicine, pain medication, muscle relaxants, and medicine for depression or anxiety).

Avoid taking eszopiclone during travel, such as to sleep on an airplane. You may be awakened before the effects of the medication have worn off. Amnesia (forgetfulness) is more common if you do not get at least 8 hours of sleep after taking eszopiclone.

Eszopiclone side effects

Eszopiclone may cause a severe allergic reaction. Stop taking eszopiclone 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. Stop using eszopiclone and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:
  • aggression, agitation, changes in behavior;

  • thoughts of hurting yourself; or

  • hallucinations (hearing or seeing things).

Keep taking the medication and talk with your doctor if you have any of these less serious side effects:

  • day-time drowsiness, dizziness, "hangover" feeling;

  • problems with memory or concentration;

  • anxiety, depression, nervous feeling;

  • headache;

  • nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, constipation;

  • dry mouth;

  • unusual or unpleasant taste in your mouth; or

  • mild skin rash.

Side effects other than those listed here may also occur. Talk to your doctor about any side effect that seems unusual or that is especially bothersome.

What other drugs will affect eszopiclone?

Before taking eszopiclone, tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following drugs:

  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane);

  • ketoconazole (Nizoral); or

  • antidepressants, narcotic pain medications, muscle relaxers, seizure medications, or anti-anxiety medications.

If you are using any of these drugs, you may not be able to use eszopiclone, or you may need dosage adjustments or special tests during treatment.

There may be other drugs not listed that can affect eszopiclone. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist has information about eszopiclone written for health professionals that you may read.

What does my medication look like?

Eszopiclone is available with a prescription under the brand name Lunesta. Other brand or generic formulations of this medication may also be available. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about this medication, especially if it is new to you.

  • Lunesta 1mg-- round, light blue, film-coated tablets.

  • Lunesta 2mg-- round, white, film-coated tablets.

  • Lunesta 3mg-- round, dark blue, film-coated tablets.

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.
Copyright 1996-2006 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 1.03. Revision Date: 04/25/2007 11:33:27 AM.

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