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Zolpidem (By mouth)

Zolpidem Tartrate (zole-PI-dem TAR-trate)

Treats insomnia.

Brand Name(s):

Ambien, Ambien CR, AmbienPAK, Gabazolpidem-5, Sentrazolpidem PM-5

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

This medicine is not right for everyone. Do not use it if you had an allergic reaction to zolpidem.

How to Use This Medicine:

Tablet, Long Acting Tablet

  • Take your medicine as directed. Your dose may need to be changed several times to find what works best for you.
  • This medicine is usually taken just before bedtime, or when you are having trouble falling asleep. Do not take this medicine if you are not able to sleep or rest for 7 to 8 hours before you need to be active again.
  • Do not take this medicine with food or right after a meal because it may not work as well.
  • Swallow the extended-release tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Ask your pharmacist for a copy if you do not have one.
  • Use this medicine only when you cannot sleep. You do not need to take it on a schedule.
  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Some medicines can affect how zolpidem works. Tell your doctor if you are using any of the following:
    • Fluoxetine
    • Ketoconazole
    • Rifampin
    • Sertraline
  • Tell your doctor if you use anything else that makes you sleepy. Some examples are allergy medicine, narcotic pain medicine, and alcohol.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease, liver disease, lung disease or breathing problems such as sleep apnea, or myasthenia gravis. Tell your doctor if you have a history of alcohol or drug addiction, depression, or mental health problems.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy, especially first thing the next morning. Do not drive or do anything that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.
  • This medicine may cause unusual moods and behaviors. You may also do things while you are still asleep that you may not remember the next morning, such as driving. Tell your doctor right away if you learn that this has happened. Also tell your doctor if you have any thought or behavior changes that concern you.
  • This medicine can be habit-forming. Do not use more than your prescribed dose. Call your doctor if you think your medicine is not working.
  • Call your doctor if you still have trouble sleeping after you take this medicine for 7 to 10 days.
  • This medicine is not for long-term use.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Anxiety, depression, nervousness, unusual behavior, or thoughts of hurting yourself
  • Memory loss
  • Seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there
  • Severe confusion, drowsiness, muscle weakness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Daytime drowsiness
  • Headache

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

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


Last Updated: 5/4/2015


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