In a study conducted with pre-hospital personnel (EMTs or paramedics) working rotating night shifts, modafinil significantly improved alertness during simulated night shifts. However, despite this improvement, sleepiness still persisted in these participants.
The results indicate that abrupt shift changes cause cognitive performance and mood disruptions in psychostimulant-free individuals. These effects are unexpected and have not been reported with modafinil before.
Effects of Modafinil on Alertness
Modafinil has been used to enhance alertness during simulated night shifts in soldiers and pilots. Modvigil 200 Australia is also used by astronauts to optimize performance during long space missions and compensate for sleep loss combined with circadian rhythm disruptions.
Modafinil improves total sleep time and sleep onset latency during simulated night shifts by reducing subjective sleepiness. These effects are particularly noticeable during the first week of abstinence from cocaine when excessive somnolence is common.
However, these effects do not last after the end of the simulated night shift. Therefore, if you are taking modafinil for long-term use, you should always follow your physician’s instructions.
Unlike stimulants such as amphetamine and methylphenidate, modafinil has relatively low abuse potential. In addition, it does not have any of the serious CNS side effects associated with these drugs. It is also a safe and effective treatment for narcolepsy. Despite this, it should not be taken in excess, more frequently, or for longer than prescribed.
Chronically, patients with shift-work sleep disorder experience insomnia when attempting to fall asleep during the day and excessive tiredness while working at night. In order to treat patients with this disorder’s sleepiness, modafinil’s efficacy was examined.
Effects of Modafinil on Sleep
Modafinil improves alertness during simulated night shifts, although it does not affect daytime sleep. In fact, it improves sleep quality in a similar manner, an oral medication that does use for treating obstructive sleep apnea.
When taken before bedtime, modafinil inhibits gamma-aminobutyric acid, which is an enzyme that regulates sleep. It also enhances the production of dopamine, glutamate, and norepinephrine, which do know to stimulate wakefulness.
In addition, modafinil reduces the number of subjective aspects of daytime sleepiness. It increases ratings of ‘Alert’ and ‘Heart pounding’ during the first 2 days of treatment, and it decreases the number of measures of ‘Sleepiness’ on the third day.
In addition, modafinil has a relatively long half-life of up to 18 hours. This means that if you take it early in the morning, it may help you fall asleep sooner and stay asleep longer.
We randomly allocated 209 individuals with shift-work sleep disturbance to receive either 200 mg of modafinil or a placebo before the start of each shift in a three-month, double-blind experiment. The overnight Multiple Sleep Latency Test, the Clinical Global Impression of Change, the Psychomotor Vigilance Test, patient diaries, and daytime polysomnography were all used to conduct assessments. Following randomization, we carried out regular evaluations.
Therapy with 200 mg of modafinil decreased the excessive drowsiness we saw in individuals with shift-work sleep disturbance, and it also improved performance somewhat but significantly compared to placebo. The necessity for the creation of even more effective therapies does highlight by the observation of residual tiredness in the treat patients.
Effects of Modafinil on Cognitive Performance
A single dose of Modafinil was effective in improving performance and alertness during simulated night shifts. It also decreased the subjective effects of fatigue and sleepiness.
A double-blind, placebo-controlled study evaluated the effect of modafinil on performance and mood in healthy adults undergoing simulated night shift work. Participants completed cognitive/psychomotor task batteries before and after drug administration.
The subjects were test for mood, fatigue, and affect and perform serial reaction time and logical reasoning tasks. They were also ask to perform vigilance and motivation tests.
A comparison of cognitive performance between the day and night shift conditions revealed that performance on the Group Embedd Figures Task, and on the Line Drawing Task was not significantly affect by the modafinil treatment. However, a trial-by-trial confidence judgment showed that the modafinil condition was overconfident in performance on some of the tasks.
Effects of Modafinil on Psychomotor Performance
Modafinil has been show to improve alertness during simulate night shifts. In a 23-day laboratory study, 11 research participants were give single doses of either modafinil 1 h before performing computerize task batteries under both day and night conditions.
The study found that modafinil improved cognitive/psychomotor performance during the night shifts. And that it also attenuated mood disruptions related to the night shift. Both active doses increased scores on the RA and DSST tests, and reduced the number of errors made during the repeated acquisition test. And increased the number of trials completed.
In addition, modafinil decreased the concentrations of GABA in the cortex, striatum, globus pallidus, and hypothalamus at therapeutic doses. Cortical GABA levels were lowere by a factor of about two after an hour. And were lower than those measure after 24 h of sleep deprivation. This decrease in cortical GABA does think to account for the psychoactive effects of modafinil.