Can CMV drivers be qualified while being prescribed Provigil (Modafinil)?

Provigil (Modafinil) is a medication used to treat excessive sleepiness caused by certain sleep disorders. These sleep disorders are narcolepsy, obstructive sleep apnea/hypopnea syndrome and shift work sleep disorders.

Provigil has several concerning side effects such as chest pain, dizziness, difficulty breathing, heart palpitations, irregular and/or fast heartbeat, increased blood pressure, tremors or shaking movements, anxiety, nervousness, rapidly changing mood, problems with memory, blurred vision or other vision changes to name a few.

Many drugs interact with Provigil which include over-the-counter medications, prescription medications, nutritional supplements, herbal products, alcohol containing beverages and caffeine. The use of Provigil needs careful supervision. Provigil may affect concentration, function or may hide signs that an individual is tired. It is recommended that until an individual knows how Provigil affects him/her, they may not drive, use machinery or do any activity that requires mental alertness.

Drivers being prescribed Provigil should not be qualified until they have been monitored closely for at least 6 weeks while taking Provigil.  You also have to consider the underlying condition.  Narcolepsy is a disqualifying condition, so Provigil use for this condition would still be disqualifying.  Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is often undiagnosed and untreated, and is disqualifying unless very specific criteria are met.  Provigil for OSA may not be adequate treatment without consideration of these other criteria.

The treating physician and the Medical Examiner should agree that the Provigil is effective in preventing daytime somnolence and document that no untoward side effects are present. Commercial motor vehicle drivers taking Provigil should be re-certified annually.

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