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Xyrem

What is Xyrem?

Sodium Oxybate is the medical name for the medication that is sold under the brand name Xyrem. It is one of the commonly used medications for the treatment of narcolepsy. Usually, doctors prescribe this medication to patients who suffer from cataplexy with narcolepsy. Cataplexy is a health condition in which a patient loses complete control of their muscles and feel extremely week.

Xyrem is a Schedule III medication but penalties for abusing this drug are equivalent to Schedule I substances. It is among the medications that have the highest risk of being abused. Sales of this medication started in the US in 2002 and in 2005 it was made available in Europe as a narcolepsy treatment. Over the years this medication has caused many controversies due to which many doctors try to avoid this medication and use alternates.

How To Consume Xyrem?

Consumption of this medication is unlike any other medication. It is taken in two doses at bedtime. For taking this medication patients need to make sure that they have their last meal of the day minimum 2-3 hours before bedtime. Mix the first dose of medication in around 60ml of water and take it. The next dose is to be taken in 3-4 hours. Patients are advised to set an alarm 4 hours from the first dose. When the alarm rings, wake up and take the second dose just like the first one. Procedure for consuming this medication may differ, try to follow your doctor’s instructions.

What Are Side Effects of Xyrem?

Xyrem or Sodium Oxybate is a really strong medication and it can have severe side effects if not used properly. Patients should be alert of any uncommon feelings that they might have after using this medication. An overdose can make the side effects life-threatening.

Normal/Moderate Side Effects

The list side effects of Xyrem are never-ending so we will be listing some of the commonly reported side effects. Mention them to your doctor during the next checkup.

  • Sleepiness
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Stomach ache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Headache
  • Sweating

Serious Side Effects

Stop using the medication if any of the side effects mentioned below develops in a patient. Call 911 or go to an ER if condition is serious.

  • Mood swings
  • Hallucinations
  • Depression
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Tinnitus
  • Severe weakness
  • Severe Dizziness
  • Bedwetting
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Rashes or swelling