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Zolpidem use?
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sumzzzs Offline

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Post: #1
Zolpidem use?
I'm sure it's been asked before: But any info on rather Zolpidem use causes more apnea, obstructive or central? I'm still using but only for the last month. Feel like I need it at the moment as my sleep is so fragmented.
01-12-2015 11:43 PM
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Crimson Nape Offline

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Post: #2
RE: Zolpidem use?
Being a suppressant I would assume that you might see an AHI increase. My doctor informs me that it has a four hour life. So I would expect to see increased CA and OA events early on and a slight decrease as the night progresses. Do you have any sleep data prior to taking the Zolpidem to make a comparison?

Statistics prove that people who have more birthdays live longer.
01-13-2015 07:42 AM
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sumzzzs Offline

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RE: Zolpidem use?
(01-13-2015 07:42 AM)sgearhart Wrote:  Being a suppressant I would assume that you might see an AHI increase. My doctor informs me that it has a four hour life. So I would expect to see increased CA and OA events early on and a slight decrease as the night progresses. Do you have any sleep data prior to taking the Zolpidem to make a comparison?
Actually I don't been taking it since I started using my equipment in early Dec. My events all come at my deepest stage of sleep, which is early morning hours.
01-13-2015 03:05 PM
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TyroneShoes Offline

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Post: #4
RE: Zolpidem use?
Of course a "4-hour life" probably refers to its half life, which means at the 4 hour mark its serum level in the bloodstream is half what it was once ingested, and at the 8-hour mark is 1/4 what is was when ingested, so it still is in effect most of the night, just not so much in those later hours.

Maybe there is a controlled-release version, such as there is with Ambien. If the problem is in the 6th or 7th hour, and the serum level is high in hours 1-3 but lower in hours 5-8, then it is missing the target. A delivery system that would start releasing it at hour 4 would be ideal, just not probably practical. Discuss with your sleep doc whether you should try it for a night or two to see if it helps; ask about a CR version.

But I look at any drug as a last resort, because it often brings with it new problems; you get to a point, not of "if I take this it will eliminate my problem", but of "If I take this, I am making a trade-off between my problem and the possibility of creating auxilary problems". And I would not wish the potential problems with Ambien on anyone.
(This post was last modified: 01-13-2015 04:04 PM by TyroneShoes.)
01-13-2015 04:03 PM
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sumzzzs Offline

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Post: #5
RE: Zolpidem use?
The controlled release version might be an option for me, but as you said I don't want to be dependent on Ambien.
01-13-2015 09:52 PM
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TyroneShoes Offline

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Post: #6
RE: Zolpidem use?
Dependency is not the issue. Ambien and others like it put both your reptile brain (the brain at the center of your physical brain that is responsible for all actions but has no rational control) and your advanced brain (the cerebrum that evolved and is wrapped around your reptile brain which is responsible for rational thought and control, and has no direct connection to your actions) to sleep, which is how you normally sleep.

But normally, both are either asleep or awake simultaneously. With Ambien, the reptile brain can wake up while the evolved, cerebral brain stays asleep, meaning nothing has control over your actions, and your actions can get you in a lot of trouble or even get you killed in that state. You can google lots of horror stories about this.

In insomnia, often the rational brain keeps both awake due to a vicious cycle of racing thoughts. Ambien breaks that cycle (basically because it makes you loopy) and puts both to sleep, but it has that risk of career-ending, life and property-threatening activity if the reptile brain happens to wake on its own.

Just did a little googling of my own, and...Oh Shoot! Zolpidem IS Ambien!
(This post was last modified: 01-13-2015 10:49 PM by TyroneShoes.)
01-13-2015 10:43 PM
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Jim Bronson Offline

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Post: #7
RE: Zolpidem use?
I've taken Zolpidem (generic for Ambien) for several years. Sometimes it seems to work; other times it doesn't. I've never experienced any of the reported side effects. According to my Dr., the side effect reported to him most often is amnesia that occurs in patients who get up in the middle of the night. Sometimes they have a snack or read, etc, and have no memory of it in the morning. Anytime I've gotten up, I always recall exactly what I did. If I had experienced such amnesia, I would have stopped taking it. I've had no other side effects.

I used to take 5mg at bedtime and another 5mg when I woke up after about four hours sleep (I cut the tablets in half). Since starting CPAP, I no longer take the second dose because my sleep isn't interrupted like it was before. I'm hoping I can soon eliminate the bedtime dose too.

Regarding Zolpidem "horror stories", Keep in mind that anyone can write anything on message boards with no possible way to verify their experiences. I'd like to believe most posters have good intentions and try to be accurate in their posts, but there are also those who have nothing better to do than try to scare people. As with other prescription meds, always take it under the supervision of a doctor, and read the patient information sheet carefully.
01-14-2015 12:20 AM
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sumzzzs Offline

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Post: #8
RE: Zolpidem use?
(01-14-2015 12:20 AM)Jim Bronson Wrote:  I've taken Zolpidem (generic for Ambien) for several years. Sometimes it seems to work; other times it doesn't. I've never experienced any of the reported side effects. According to my Dr., the side effect reported to him most often is amnesia that occurs in patients who get up in the middle of the night. Sometimes they have a snack or read, etc, and have no memory of it in the morning. Anytime I've gotten up, I always recall exactly what I did. If I had experienced such amnesia, I would have stopped taking it. I've had no other side effects.

I used to take 5mg at bedtime and another 5mg when I woke up after about four hours sleep (I cut the tablets in half). Since starting CPAP, I no longer take the second dose because my sleep isn't interrupted like it was before. I'm hoping I can soon eliminate the bedtime dose too.

Regarding Zolpidem "horror stories", Keep in mind that anyone can write anything on message boards with no possible way to verify their experiences. I'd like to believe most posters have good intentions and try to be accurate in their posts, but there are also those who have nothing better to do than try to scare people. As with other prescription meds, always take it under the supervision of a doctor, and read the patient information sheet carefully.

Thanks for that that is what Ive been doing to try and manage my fragmented sleep, it worked last niht and my numbers were better, I also have Extended relief that I took last night, I guess I got a large chunk o sleep between 6-9 but had many CA events in that time frame. I believe I w2as on back
01-14-2015 01:48 AM
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OMyMyOHellYes Offline

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Post: #9
RE: Zolpidem use?
For me, no difference in reported AHI either on or off zolpidem (CR) for the period when I am asleep.

OMM
01-14-2015 07:00 AM
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TyroneShoes Offline

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Post: #10
Gross RE: Zolpidem use?
(01-14-2015 12:20 AM)Jim Bronson Wrote:  ...Regarding Zolpidem "horror stories", Keep in mind that anyone can write anything on message boards with no possible way to verify their experiences. I'd like to believe most posters have good intentions and try to be accurate in their posts, but there are also those who have nothing better to do than try to scare people. As with other prescription meds, always take it under the supervision of a doctor, and read the patient information sheet carefully.

Well, Jim, I am afraid I am going to have to take personal offense at this.

Anyone who swallows whole any theory or "story" on the internet probably gets what they deserve, which is why I suggested that people go check for themselves to verify what I was saying, something you apparently missed. There ARE ways to verify this, and it doesn't take much more than the computer you are sitting in front of right now. It does also take just a bit of motivation.

I never asked anyone to believe blindly a post they might come across on a forum. I also would not expect folks to swallow whole a horror story or two that they might unearth, but in this case there is just too much smoke for the odds to be that there is no fire.

This is also supported by well-accredited psychologists who expressed this to me directly, face to face.

You can guess at motivations, but I will also tell you that mine are never to scare people, and to be as accurate as I can be. Your cynicism is a healthy quality, just obscenely misplaced in this particular instance.

As for the motivations of the drug companies, it seems obvious that they don't want to cause a health issue (but mostly only because it would blow back on them), but also obvious is that the primary motivation is profit, pleasing the board, and keeping their cushy jobs by pleasing the board by making those profits. No one does not understand that.

And if you want an example of corporate behavior, just review the recent failed ignition switch case, in which a 29-cent part could have saved a life, time and time again, yet the whole issue was stonewalled and swept under the rug for an obscenely-long time. Then place your faith in the drug company or its info sheet.

I am not sure what more would satisfy you. Would you rather not know about the possibilities? Would you rather that terrorists silence free speech like they did in Paris last week? Just who are you serving here, other than your own ego? Its an honest, innocent question.

Many or most who take this drug will be just fine, but then there are only 10 or 12 cases out of ~6 million prescriptions a year for Prozac in the 90's where someone committed suicide and it was assumed that Prozac was instrumental. Only 10 or 12. Only 10 or 12 who are no longer walking around and contributing on websites anymore. It's a tiny statistic, but probably large to someone who lost a parent, or a spouse, or a child.

The odds are very low, but it is still a version of Russian Roulette any time you tinker with your personal chemistry, and the stories related to Ambien are quite horrific. If you do not lose a budding career because your employer learns of you being arrested for peeing naked in a busy intersection at 2 AM, the odds are still greater that this will not happen, if you did not take Ambien and wash it down with half a glass of wine the night before. That is not just my opinion, that is a confirmed fact.

People can make their own choices. I just feel that they are better off if they make informed choices. I hope you can understand why this is upsetting to me. Not only is it personal, but it seems to undermine the potential for people to learn from the recorded history of problems with this particular drug.

I also don't think we need Captain Obvious to point out that a forum post is not guaranteed to be gospel truth, or that users should read the info sheet and be careful of side-effects. How would any of us ever have known any of that without the help of your keen observation skills, anyway?
(This post was last modified: 01-14-2015 05:01 PM by TyroneShoes.)
01-14-2015 04:54 PM
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