Ambien (Zolpidem Tartrate), Page 1

Ambien (zolpidem tartrate) is indicated for the short-term treatment of insomnia characterized by difficulties with sleep initiation. Ambien has been shown to decrease sleep latency for up to 35 days in controlled clinical studies.

AMBIEN — zolpidem tartrate tablet, film coated
STAT RX USA LLC

1 INDICATIONS AND USAGE

Ambien (zolpidem tartrate) is indicated for the short-term treatment of insomnia characterized by difficulties with sleep initiation. Ambien has been shown to decrease sleep latency for up to 35 days in controlled clinical studies [see Clinical Studies (14)].

The clinical trials performed in support of efficacy were 4–5 weeks in duration with the final formal assessments of sleep latency performed at the end of treatment.

2 DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION

The dose of Ambien should be individualized.

2.1 Dosage in adults

The recommended dose for adults is 10 mg once daily immediately before bedtime. The total Ambien dose should not exceed 10 mg per day.

2.2 Special populations

Elderly or debilitated patients may be especially sensitive to the effects of zolpidem tartrate. Patients with hepatic insufficiency do not clear the drug as rapidly as normal subjects. The recommended dose of Ambien in both of these patient populations is 5 mg once daily immediately before bedtime [see Warnings and Precautions (5.6)].

2.3 Use with CNS depressants

Dosage adjustment may be necessary when Ambien is combined with other CNS depressant drugs because of the potentially additive effects [see Warnings and Precautions (5.5)].

2.4 Administration

The effect of Ambien may be slowed by ingestion with or immediately after a meal.

3 DOSAGE FORMS AND STRENGTHS

Ambien is available in 5 mg and 10 mg strength tablets for oral administration. Tablets are not scored.

Ambien 5 mg tablets are capsule-shaped, pink, film coated, with AMB 5 debossed on one side and 5401 on the other.

Ambien 10 mg tablets are capsule-shaped, white, film coated, with AMB 10 debossed on one side and 5421 on the other.

4 CONTRAINDICATIONS

Ambien is contraindicated in patients with known hypersensitivity to zolpidem tartrate or to any of the inactive ingredients in the formulation. Observed reactions include anaphylaxis and angioedema [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)].

5 WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

5.1 Need to evaluate for co-morbid diagnoses

Because sleep disturbances may be the presenting manifestation of a physical and/or psychiatric disorder, symptomatic treatment of insomnia should be initiated only after a careful evaluation of the patient. The failure of insomnia to remit after 7 to 10 days of treatment may indicate the presence of a primary psychiatric and/or medical illness that should be evaluated. Worsening of insomnia or the emergence of new thinking or behavior abnormalities may be the consequence of an unrecognized psychiatric or physical disorder. Such findings have emerged during the course of treatment with sedative/hypnotic drugs, including zolpidem.

5.2 Severe anaphylactic and anaphylactoid reactions

Rare cases of angioedema involving the tongue, glottis or larynx have been reported in patients after taking the first or subsequent doses of sedative-hypnotics, including zolpidem. Some patients have had additional symptoms such as dyspnea, throat closing or nausea and vomiting that suggest anaphylaxis. Some patients have required medical therapy in the emergency department. If angioedema involves the throat, glottis or larynx, airway obstruction may occur and be fatal. Patients who develop angioedema after treatment with zolpidem should not be rechallenged with the drug.

5.3 Abnormal thinking and behavioral changes

A variety of abnormal thinking and behavior changes have been reported to occur in association with the use of sedative/hypnotics. Some of these changes may be characterized by decreased inhibition (e.g., aggressiveness and extroversion that seemed out of character), similar to effects produced by alcohol and other CNS depressants. Visual and auditory hallucinations have been reported as well as behavioral changes such as bizarre behavior, agitation and depersonalization. In controlled trials, < 1% of adults with insomnia who received zolpidem reported hallucinations. In a clinical trial, 7.4% of pediatric patients with insomnia associated with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), who received zolpidem reported hallucinations [see Use in Specific Populations (8.4)].

Complex behaviors such as “sleep-driving” (i.e., driving while not fully awake after ingestion of a sedative-hypnotic, with amnesia for the event) have been reported with sedative-hypnotics, including zolpidem. These events can occur in sedative-hypnotic-naive as well as in sedative-hypnotic-experienced persons. Although behaviors such as “sleep-driving” may occur with Ambien alone at therapeutic doses, the use of alcohol and other CNS depressants with Ambien appears to increase the risk of such behaviors, as does the use of Ambien at doses exceeding the maximum recommended dose. Due to the risk to the patient and the community, discontinuation of Ambien should be strongly considered for patients who report a “sleep-driving” episode. Other complex behaviors (e.g., preparing and eating food, making phone calls, or having sex) have been reported in patients who are not fully awake after taking a sedative-hypnotic. As with “sleep-driving”, patients usually do not remember these events. Amnesia, anxiety and other neuro-psychiatric symptoms may occur unpredictably.

In primarily depressed patients, worsening of depression, including suicidal thoughts and actions (including completed suicides), has been reported in association with the use of sedative/hypnotics.

It can rarely be determined with certainty whether a particular instance of the abnormal behaviors listed above is drug induced, spontaneous in origin, or a result of an underlying psychiatric or physical disorder. Nonetheless, the emergence of any new behavioral sign or symptom of concern requires careful and immediate evaluation.

5.4 Withdrawal effects

Following the rapid dose decrease or abrupt discontinuation of sedative/hypnotics, there have been reports of signs and symptoms similar to those associated with withdrawal from other CNS-depressant drugs [see Drug Abuse and Dependence (9)].

5.5 CNS depressant effects

Ambien, like other sedative/hypnotic drugs, has CNS-depressant effects. Due to the rapid onset of action, Ambien should only be taken immediately prior to going to bed. Patients should be cautioned against engaging in hazardous occupations requiring complete mental alertness or motor coordination such as operating machinery or driving a motor vehicle after ingesting the drug, including potential impairment of the performance of such activities that may occur the day following ingestion of Ambien. Ambien showed additive effects when combined with alcohol and should not be taken with alcohol. Patients should also be cautioned about possible combined effects with other CNS-depressant drugs. Dosage adjustments may be necessary when Ambien is administered with such agents because of the potentially additive effects.

5.6 Special populations

Use in the elderly and/or debilitated patients:

Impaired motor and/or cognitive performance after repeated exposure or unusual sensitivity to sedative/hypnotic drugs is a concern in the treatment of elderly and/or debilitated patients. Therefore, the recommended Ambien dosage is 5 mg in such patients to decrease the possibility of side effects [see Dosage and Administration (2.2)]. These patients should be closely monitored.

Use in patients with concomitant illness:

Clinical experience with Ambien (zolpidem tartrate) in patients with concomitant systemic illness is limited. Caution is advisable in using Ambien in patients with diseases or conditions that could affect metabolism or hemodynamic responses.

Although studies did not reveal respiratory depressant effects at hypnotic doses of zolpidem in normal subjects or in patients with mild to moderate chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a reduction in the Total Arousal Index together with a reduction in lowest oxygen saturation and increase in the times of oxygen desaturation below 80% and 90% was observed in patients with mild-to-moderate sleep apnea when treated with Ambien (10 mg) when compared to placebo. Since sedative/hypnotics have the capacity to depress respiratory drive, precautions should be taken if Ambien is prescribed to patients with compromised respiratory function. Post-marketing reports of respiratory insufficiency, most of which involved patients with pre-existing respiratory impairment, have been received. Ambien should be used with caution in patients with sleep apnea syndrome or myasthenia gravis.

Data in end-stage renal failure patients repeatedly treated with Ambien did not demonstrate drug accumulation or alterations in pharmacokinetic parameters. No dosage adjustment in renally impaired patients is required; however, these patients should be closely monitored [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

A study in subjects with hepatic impairment did reveal prolonged elimination in this group; therefore, treatment should be initiated with 5 mg in patients with hepatic compromise, and they should be closely monitored [see Dosage and Administration (2.2) and Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

Use in patients with depression:

As with other sedative/hypnotic drugs, Ambien should be administered with caution to patients exhibiting signs or symptoms of depression. Suicidal tendencies may be present in such patients and protective measures may be required. Intentional over-dosage is more common in this group of patients; therefore, the least amount of drug that is feasible should be prescribed for the patient at any one time.

Use in pediatric patients:

Safety and effectiveness of zolpidem have not been established in pediatric patients. In an 8-week study in pediatric patients (aged 6–17 years) with insomnia associated with ADHD, zolpidem did not decrease sleep latency compared to placebo. Hallucinations were reported in 7.4% of the pediatric patients who received zolpidem; none of the pediatric patients who received placebo reported hallucinations [see Use in Specific Populations (8.4)].

6 ADVERSE REACTIONS

The following serious adverse reactions are discussed in greater detail in other sections of the labeling:

6.1 Clinical trials experience

Associated with discontinuation of treatment:

Approximately 4% of 1,701 patients who received zolpidem at all doses (1.25 to 90 mg) in U.S. premarketing clinical trials discontinued treatment because of an adverse reaction. Reactions most commonly associated with discontinuation from U.S. trials were daytime drowsiness (0.5%), dizziness (0.4%), headache (0.5%), nausea (0.6%), and vomiting (0.5%).

Approximately 4% of 1,959 patients who received zolpidem at all doses (1 to 50 mg) in similar foreign trials discontinued treatment because of an adverse reaction. Reactions most commonly associated with discontinuation from these trials were daytime drowsiness (1.1%), dizziness/vertigo (0.8%), amnesia (0.5%), nausea (0.5%), headache (0.4%), and falls (0.4%).

Data from a clinical study in which selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)-treated patients were given zolpidem revealed that four of the seven discontinuations during double-blind treatment with zolpidem (n=95) were associated with impaired concentration, continuing or aggravated depression, and manic reaction; one patient treated with placebo (n=97) was discontinued after an attempted suicide.

Most commonly observed adverse reactions in controlled trials:

During short-term treatment (up to 10 nights) with Ambien at doses up to 10 mg, the most commonly observed adverse reactions associated with the use of zolpidem and seen at statistically significant differences from placebo treated patients were drowsiness (reported by 2% of zolpidem patients), dizziness (1%), and diarrhea (1%). During longer-term treatment (28 to 35 nights) with zolpidem at doses up to 10 mg, the most commonly observed adverse reactions associated with the use of zolpidem and seen at statistically significant differences from placebo treated patients were dizziness (5%) and drugged feelings (3%).

Adverse reactions observed at an incidence of ≥ 1% in controlled trials:

The following tables enumerate treatment-emergent adverse reactions frequencies that were observed at an incidence equal to 1% or greater among patients with insomnia who received zolpidem tartrate and at a greater incidence than placebo in U.S. placebo-controlled trials. Events reported by investigators were classified utilizing a modified World Health Organization (WHO) dictionary of preferred terms for the purpose of establishing event frequencies. The prescriber should be aware that these figures cannot be used to predict the incidence of side effects in the course of usual medical practice, in which patient characteristics and other factors differ from those that prevailed in these clinical trials. Similarly, the cited frequencies cannot be compared with figures obtained from other clinical investigators involving related drug products and uses, since each group of drug trials is conducted under a different set of conditions. However, the cited figures provide the physician with a basis for estimating the relative contribution of drug and nondrug factors to the incidence of side effects in the population studied.

The following table was derived from results of 11 placebo-controlled short-term U.S. efficacy trials involving zolpidem in doses ranging from 1.25 to 20 mg. The table is limited to data from doses up to and including 10 mg, the highest dose recommended for use.

Incidence of Treatment-Emergent Adverse Experiences in Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials Lasting up to 10 Nights (Percentage of patients reporting)
Body System/
Adverse Event*
Zolpidem
(≤10mg)
(N=685)
Placebo
(N=473)
*
Reactions reported by at least 1% of patients treated with Ambien and at a greater frequency than placebo.
Central and Peripheral Nervous System
Headache 7 6
Drowsiness 2 _
Dizziness 1 _
Gastrointestinal System
Diarrhea 1

The following table was derived from results of three placebo-controlled long-term efficacy trials involving Ambien (zolpidem tartrate). These trials involved patients with chronic insomnia who were treated for 28 to 35 nights with zolpidem at doses of 5, 10, or 15 mg. The table is limited to data from doses up to and including 10 mg, the highest dose recommended for use. The table includes only adverse events occurring at an incidence of at least 1% for zolpidem patients.

Incidence of Treatment-Emergent Adverse Experiences in Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trials Lasting up to 35 Nights (Percentage of patients reporting)
Body System/
Adverse Event*
Zolpidem
(≤10mg)
(N=152)
Placebo
(N=161)
*
Reactions reported by at least 1% of patients treated with Ambien and at a greater frequency than placebo.
Autonomic Nervous System
Dry mouth 3 1
Body as a Whole
Allergy 4 1
Back Pain 3 2
Influenza-like symptoms 2
Chest pain 1
Cardiovascular System
Palpitation 2
Central and Peripheral Nervous System
Drowsiness 8 5
Dizziness 5 1
Lethargy 3 1
Drugged feeling 3
Lightheadedness 2 1
Depression 2 1
Abnormal dreams 1
Amnesia 1
Sleep disorder 1
Gastrointestinal System
Diarrhea 3 2
Abdominal pain 2 2
Constipation 2 1
Respiratory System
Sinusitis 4 2
Pharyngitis 3 1
Skin and Appendages
Rash 2 1

All medication material on this site is included in as near-original form as possible: information as supplied by the FDA has been rendered here with only typographical or stylistic modifications and not with any substantive alterations of content, meaning or intent. This page was originally published by on and was last reviewed or updated by Site Editor on .

This site is brought to you by the team behind counselling and psychotherapy site CounsellingResource.com. Our mental health medication information is not intended as a substitute for direct consultation with a qualified health professional. The graphic portion of our unofficial logo was created by the talented Ukrainian artist and illustrator Iaroslav Lazunov and is used under license, copyright © Depositphotos.com/Iaroslav Lazunov.

Copyright © 2002-2019. All Rights Reserved.