Zaleplon (Sonata® and generic) is a hypnotic with a chemical structure unrelated to benzodiazepines, barbiturates, or other drugs. Here is basic information about this medication.
Short-term treatment of insomnia (decreases sleep latency).
Zaleplon is primarily metabolized by aldehyde oxidase and, to a lesser extent, by cytochrome P450 3A4 (Prescribing Information).
All of its metabolites are pharmacologically inactive (Prescribing Information).
Zaleplon (Sonata®) is contraindicated in :
1. Patients who have experienced complex sleep behaviors after taking zaleplon.
2. Patients with hypersensitivity to zaleplon or any excipients in the pills.
Warnings and Precautions
The boxed warning (so-called “black box warning”) for zaleplon (Sonata®) states (Prescribing Information):
|WARNING: COMPLEX SLEEP BEHAVIORS
Complex sleep behaviors including sleep-walking, sleep-driving, and engaging in other activities while not fully awake may occur following use of Sonata. Some of these events may result in serious injuries, including death. Discontinue Sonata immediately if a patient experiences a complex sleep behavior
Please see THIS PAGE for a patient handout from the Prescribing Information about possible complex sleep behaviors related to zaleplon (Sonata®).
Here is a link to the Medication guide for zaleplon (Sonata®) that should be provided to patients:
Potential side effects
Please see THIS PAGE for a handout listing both the common and less common side effects of this medication along with the percentages of patients who report them.
Dosage and administration
Initial dose: 10 mg once daily at bedtime OR after going to sleep if having trouble going to sleep
Maximum dose: 20 mg once daily at bedtime
a) Low weight: 5 mg once daily at bedtime
b) Elderly or debilitated: Recommended dose 5 mg, maximum dose 10 mg
c) Mild to moderate hepatic impairment: 5 mg once daily at bedtime
d) Severe hepatic impairment: Not recommended
Dosage forms and strengths
Capsules: 5 mg, 10 mg
Please refer to Prescribing Information (see link below) for a complete discussion of dosage, administration, warnings and precautions, contraindications, etc.
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Zaleplon (Sonata®) Prescribing Information
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