Most users of Modafinil do not experience any negative side-effects, but some have been noted in a few users:
- loss of appetite
- back pain
- elevated heart rate or palpitations
- difficulty sleeping
- stuffy or runny nose
- upset stomach and throwing up
In some cases, simply reducing the dosage will eliminate the symptom.
More serious symptoms of an adverse reaction include:
- dizziness or fainting
- mood swings
- chronic sleepiness
- signs of liver problems (such as yellowing of the eyes or skin, abdominal pain, darkened urine)
- skin rash
If you notice any of these symptoms, you should stop using Modafinil and consult with a doctor.
The most serious reactions are:
- chest pain
- signs of severe allergic reaction, including the swelling of airways
- fever, blisters, and skin peeling off. This is called Steven-Johnson syndrome and is extremely serious. It can lead the Toxic Shock Syndrome.
If you experience any of these symptoms, you should seek medical help immediately.
Negative interaction with foods and other drugs
Modafinil can interact negatively with some foods and other drugs, and so those should be avoided while using Modafinil.
Grapefruit can have a serious effect on how Modafinil is removed by the system after ingestion. It can build up in the body and lead to serious problems. Anyone taking Modafinil should avoid eating grapefruit or drinking grapefruit juice.
Alcohol should not be consumed while taking Modafinil, or in very strict moderation. It can have varying negative effects. Some users report that the combination intensifies the effect of the Modafinil, extending the period of wakefulness well into the desired sleep period. Others have experienced a much-decreased tolerance to alcohol, leading to much quicker inebriation. Most worrying is that some people have experienced black-out periods, where while they have been wide awake, walking and talking, they later have no memory of these periods of time. Overall, great care should be taken in the consumption of alcohol on days that you have taken Modafinil.
Hormonal Birth Control Methods may not be as effective when taken in conjunction with Modafinil. Barrier methods such as diaphragms and condoms should be used as well for complete protection
One of the reasons that you should always obtain medical advice before using Modafinil is so that a doctor and pharmacist can review the other medications you take so that they can determine whether it is safe for you to use Modafinil in conjunction with those medications.
Who shouldn’t take it: Pre-existing health conditions
Heart disease: There has been some evidence that people with a history of left ventricular hypertrophy, mitral valve prolapse or arrhythmia should avoid the use of Modafinil.
Decreased Liver Function: Because Modafinil is metabolized in the liver, it could potentially cause some issues. While it puts less stress on the liver than Adrafinil, which has to be broken down in the liver to become Modafinil, it still could pose a risk for those suffering from liver disease, and should be avoided.
Seizure disorder: Since Modafinil interacts with the central nervous system, it can cause seizures in those who have a pre-existing condition. If a patient who has suffered previously with seizures wishes to try Modafinil, it should be under close supervision, and use should be discontinued if there are any signs of Modafinil exacerbating the condition.
Mental illness: Modafinil should not be used by someone with anxiety or agitation disorders.
Pregnancy and Breast-feeding: No studies have been conducted regarding the safety of using Modafinil by pregnant or lactating mothers. Its use should be suspended for the duration of the pregnancy and breast-feeding.