Sunosi FDA Approved for Excessive Daytime Sleepiness in Patients with OSA and Narcolepsy

In a considerable industry breakthrough, Sunosi (solriamfetol), a new prescription medication has received FDA approval to treat excessive daytime sleepiness in patients with abnormal sleep patterns, such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and Narcolepsy. 

What kind of drug is Sunosi?

Sunosi, which contains the active drug solriamfetol belongs to a class of drugs called dopamine-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors. A drug’s “class” just means that it acts in similar ways to other drugs of its class. One of the more common groups you may be familiar with are NSAIDs like old reliables aspirin and ibuprofen. 

So, is Sunosi a Stimulant since it helps with sleepiness?

Actually, no. Even though Sunosi acts like a stimulant by keeping you awake, it is not classified as a stimulant because it works in a different way than stimulants do. Interestingly, it’s not known exactly how Sunosi works to treat excessive sleepiness. But it’s thought that the drug increases the levels of certain chemicals in your brain, causing you to feel more awake. This includes the brain chemicals dopamine and norepinephrine.

Would I still need my CPAP if I use Sunosi?

Yes! In those with OSA (obstructive sleep apnea) your CPAP is treating your airway obstruction first and foremost. Sunosi should not be used to treat your airwary obstruction. In fact, the drug should only be used if a person has had at least 1 month of therapy to treat their airway obstruction with a device such as CPAP. 

Alright, what are the side effects?

Sunosi can cause mild or serious side effects ranging from such mild effects as headache and dry mouth to more serious effects like allergic reaction and increased blood pressure. Here is a fuller list, but for a complete list, please reach out to a medical provider (hint hint: we’re one!). 

Is Sunosi right for me?

If you have been on your CPAP (continuous positive airway pressure) for at least one month and are still suffering from excessive daytime sleepiness, then Sunosi could a welcome addition into your sleep therapy. 

Keep in mind that while Sunosi does improve wakefulness in people with obstructive sleep apnea (OSA), the drug doesn’t treat OSA itself. So, it’s important that if you’re using CPAP for OSA, you keep using it while you’re taking Sunosi. 

Reach to our team of board-certified sleep specialists to learn more about Sunosi and see if it may be right for you. You can call us at (866) 313-4802, email sleeptight@cpaprx.com, or click the button in the bottom right corner to Live Chat with us. 

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