December 09, 2004


John had a post discussing how he would like more time in the day [who wouldn't?]; bouncing back and forth in his comments was a direction to this article in the LA Times, essentially bringing up the concept of performance enhancing meds. The original post has this link, which then leads here - The Good Drug Guide.

Please note that what follows isn't medical advice, it's just me blathering on.


The company's drug site is here; the prescribing information is here.

The drug is approved by the FDA essentially for clinical conditions involving sleepyness when you want to be awake, for example narcolepsy. One of the conditions is Shift Work Sleep Disorder.

There is clearly some abuse potential. I bet [and this is only a bet, I don't know] that it's abuse potential is significantly less than speed mainly because of it's halflife of 40 hours. Ie, when you're jonesing for your drug of choice you don't want something that's going to hit you a couple of hours after you take it, and then will last for a long time. The most addictive substances tend to be fast on, fast off, so you want more, more, more.

So, given that I am in favor of legalizing [and regulating and taxing] at least marijuana and probably other street drugs, do I have a significant problem with people occasionally using Provigil even if they don't have narcolepsy? No. Here and now, given the medico-legal climate, would I be comfortable with prescribing the drug for someone who wanted to fit an extra day in their schedule once in a while? No.

The other point I was making is after 36 hours awake, 8-9 hours of sleep just doesn't do it for me. I never pulled an all-nighter during college, even though it was fairly common - my ability to be creative and intelligent drops significantly around 4AM. I knew one guy however who's sleep cycle was roughly 3 days awake, 1 day asleep.

Posted by Owlish at December 9, 2004 08:53 AM | TrackBack
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