Objectives: To assess the long-term efficacy and safety of modafinil in patients with excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) associated with narcolepsy.Background: Modafinil has been shown to be effective and well tolerated for treating EDS associated with narcolepsy in two large-scale, well-controlled, 9-week clinical trials.Methods: Four hundred and seventy eight adult patients with a diagnosis of narcolepsy who had completed one of two 9-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicenter, clinical trials of modafinil were enrolled in two 40-week, open-label, extension studies. A flexible-dose regimen (i.e. 200, 300, or 400 mg daily) was followed in one study. In the second study, patients received 200 mg/day for 1 week, followed by 400 mg/day for 1 week. Investigators then prescribed either 200- or 400-mg doses for the duration of the study. Efficacy was evaluated using Clinical Global Impression of Change (CGI-C) scores, the Epworth Sleepiness Scale (ESS), and the 36-item Medical Outcomes Study health survey (SF-36). Adverse events were recorded. Data from the two studies were combined.Results: The majority of patients ( approximately 75%) received 400 mg of modafinil daily. Disease severity improved in >80% of patients throughout the 40-week study. At weeks 2, 8, 24, and 40, disease severity was 'much improved' or 'very much improved' in 49, 58, 59, and 58% of patients, respectively. The mean (+/-SEM) ESS score improved significantly from 16.5+/-0.2 at open-label baseline to 12.4+/-0.2 at week 2 and remained at that level through week 40 (P<0.001). Quality of life scores at weeks 4, 8, 24, and 40 were significantly improved versus open-label baseline scores for six of the eight SF-36 domains (P<0.001). The most common treatment-related adverse events were headache (13%), nervousness (8%), and nausea (5%). Most adverse events were mild to moderate in nature. A total of 341 patients (71%) completed the studies. Forty-three patients (9.0%) discontinued treatment because of adverse events.Conclusions: Modafinil is effective for the long-term treatment of EDS associated with narcolepsy and significantly improves perceptions of general health. Modafinil is well tolerated, with no evidence of tolerance developing during 40 weeks of treatment.
View details for PubMedID 10828434