Zolpimist is a prescription medicine used for treating insomnia. It is specifically approved for the short-term treatment of insomnia in people with difficulty falling asleep (rather than people who have trouble staying asleep). The medication comes in the form of an oral spray that is sprayed directly into the mouth immediately before bedtime. Potential side effects include drowsiness, dizziness, and headaches.
What Is Zolpimist?
Zolpimist® (zolpidem oral spray) is a prescription medication approved for the short-term treatment of insomnia in people with difficulty falling asleep (as opposed to difficulty staying asleep). It contains the same active ingredient as Ambien® and Ambien CR®, except it comes in the form of a fast-acting oral spray, instead of a tablet.
Zolpimist is made by Rechon Life Sciences AB and is marketed by ECR Pharmaceuticals.
How Does Zolpimist Work?
Zolpimist is part of a class of medications called sedative/hypnotics, which are known more commonly as sleep medicines. It is thought that Zolpimist works by binding to certain receptors in the brain known as benzodiazepine receptors. It should be noted that Zolpimist is not a benzodiazepine drug and is not chemically related to benzodiazepines, even though it binds to the same receptors.
Studies have shown that Zolpimist helps people fall asleep faster, stay asleep longer, and wake up less frequently, compared to a placebo spray (with no active ingredients). Studies have also shown that Zolpimist (at the recommended dosage) is unlikely to cause a "hangover" effect the next day and is unlikely to cause rebound insomnia (a worsening of insomnia once the medication is stopped).
Studies of Zolpimist have been relatively short (a few weeks in duration), and it is not clear if this medication is effective when used for more than 35 days.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed January 13, 2009.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 8th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins; 2008.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed January 13, 2009.
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