zolpidem, Ambien, Ambien CR, Zolpimist, Edluar, Tovalt ODT (discontinued)

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Medical and Pharmacy Editor:

GENERIC NAME: zolpidem

BRAND NAME: Ambien, Ambien CR, Intermezzo, Zolpimist, Edluar

DISCONTINUED BRAND: Tovalt ODT

DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Zolpidem belongs to a class of drugs called sedatives or hypnotics. Zolpidem shares some characteristics of a family of sedatives called benzodiazepines. Benzodiazepines cause sedation, muscle relaxation, act as anti-convulsants (anti-seizure medications), and reduce anxiety. Zolpidem has selectivity in that it has little of the muscle relaxant and anti-seizure effects and more of the sedative effect. Therefore, it is used primarily as a medication for sleep. The oral spray form of zolpidem, Zolpimist, has more rapid absorption than the tablet form because it is absorbed through the lining of the mouth. The FDA approved zolpidem in December 1992.

PRESCRIBED FOR: Zolpidem is used for treating insomnia. Conventional tablets are used for short-term treatment of insomnia associated with difficulty falling asleep. Long acting tablets are used for treating insomnia associated with difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Zolpidem improves initiation of sleep and keeps patients asleep longer.

SIDE EFFECTS: The most common side effects of zolpidem are:

  • drowsiness,
  • dizziness, and
  • a "drugged" feeling, which probably reflect the action of the drug.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/23/2015



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