What is eszopiclone?

Eszopiclone is a sedative, also called a hypnotic. It affects chemicals in your brain that may become unbalanced and cause sleep problems (insomnia).

Eszopiclone is used to treat insomnia. This medication causes relaxation to help you fall asleep and stay asleep.

Eszopiclone may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.

Precautions

Eszopiclone will make you fall asleep. Never take this medication during your normal waking hours, unless you have at least 8 hours to dedicate to sleeping.

Some people using this medicine have engaged in activity such as driving, eating, or making phone calls and later having no memory of the activity. If this happens to you, stop taking eszopiclone and talk with your doctor about another treatment for your sleep disorder.

Do not use this medication if you are allergic to eszopiclone.

Before taking eszopiclone, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:

  • liver disease;
  • sleep apnea (breathing stops while you are asleep);
  • lung disease such as asthma, bronchitis, emphysema, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD);
  • a history of depression, mental illness, or suicidal thoughts; or
  • a history of drug or alcohol addiction.

If you have any of these conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take eszopiclone.

FDA pregnancy category C. This medication may be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

Eszopiclone can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

The sedative effects of eszopiclone may be stronger in older adults. Accidental falls are common in elderly patients who take sedatives. Use caution to avoid falling or accidental injury while you are taking eszopiclone.

Eszopiclone may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Eszopiclone should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it.

Eszopiclone can cause side effects that may impair your thinking or reactions. You may still feel sleepy the morning after taking the medication. Until you know how this medication will affect you during waking hours, be careful if you drive, operate machinery, pilot an airplane, or do anything that requires you to be awake and alert.

Do not drink alcohol while you are taking eszopiclone. It can increase some of the side effects of eszopiclone, including drowsiness.

Do not take other medicines that make you sleepy (such as cold medicine, pain medication, muscle relaxants, and medicine for depression or anxiety).

Avoid taking eszopiclone during travel, such as to sleep on an airplane. You may be awakened before the effects of the medication have worn off. Amnesia (forgetfulness) is more common if you do not get at least 8 hours of sleep after taking eszopiclone.

Back to top

Instructions

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine. Symptoms of an eszopiclone overdose are not known.

Since eszopiclone is usually taken as needed, you may not be on a dosing schedule. Never take this medication if you do not have at least 8 hours to sleep before being active again. Do not take extra medicine to make up a missed dose.

Back to top

Side Effects

Eszopiclone may cause a severe allergic reaction. Stop taking eszopiclone and get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using eszopiclone and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • aggression, agitation, changes in behavior;
  • thoughts of hurting yourself; or
  • hallucinations (hearing or seeing things).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • day-time drowsiness, dizziness, "hangover" feeling;
  • problems with memory or concentration;
  • anxiety, depression, nervous feeling;
  • headache;
  • nausea, stomach pain, loss of appetite, constipation;
  • dry mouth;
  • unusual or unpleasant taste in your mouth; or
  • mild skin rash.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Back to top

Interactions

Before taking eszopiclone, tell your doctor if you are taking any of the following drugs:

  • rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane);
  • ketoconazole (Nizoral); or
  • antidepressants, narcotic pain medications, muscle relaxers, seizure medications, or anti-anxiety medications.

This list is not complete an there may be other drugs that can interact with eszopiclone. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Other Names

Lunesta and eszopiclone

Back to top

Disclaimer

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2004 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version 2.05. Revision date 8/23/04

Last updated: