Zolpidem is a hypnotic drug from the group of imidazopyridines, used as part of many modern hypnotic drugs. According to its effectiveness, the benzodiazepine analogue has a very short half-life (about 2 hours) and is not a source of pharmacologically active metabolites. Rapidly absorbed by the body, the maximum concentration in plasma is reached in about two hours. Currently, the most common sleeping pill in the US and in Europe, known abroad under a variety of different commercial names, but Ambien is considered the best.

Ambien tablets

There are reports of the paradoxical effects of zolpidem on patients in certain comatose states in which people are conscious but cannot move or speak. In some of these patients, after the use of zolpidem, a temporary restoration of motor activity was noted, up to the possibility of talking, eating and walking.

The drug on pharmacological activity is close to benzodiazepines and has muscle relaxant, anxiolytic, sedative, hypnotic, amnestic and anticonvulsant effects.

The action of the drug is based on specific agonism with central omega receptors (benzodiazepine receptors type I and II) – macromolecular GABA receptor complexes that cause the discovery of neuronal anion channels for chlorine.

The interaction with central benzodiazepine receptors of type I (omega-1) occurs selectively, which makes the sedative effect noticeable at lower doses than is necessary to achieve other (muscle relaxant, anxiolytic, amnesic) effects.

It reduces the time of falling asleep and reduces the number of nightly awakenings, prolongs the duration of sleep and improves its quality. The duration of stage II of sleep and deep sleep of stages III and IV increases, there is no effect on the duration of the phase of REM sleep.

The most common side effects of zolpidem are drowsiness (5%), dizziness (5%), headache (3%), and gastrointestinal disorders (4%). From 15% to 2% of patients taking this drug, have memory problems, complain of nightmares, confusion. Individual cases of sensory impairment and psychotic symptoms have been reported with zolpidem. In particular, delusions, hallucinations, distortion of sensory perception can develop. Amnesia, including sleep-associated bulimia, is more common with this drug than with triazolam.

In patients taking zolpidem, the presence of adverse reactions should be monitored, since the use of zolpidem can be a potential provocative factor in cases where unreasonable patient’s unreasonable violence is observed, which can be accompanied by psychosis, amnesia and confusion.

The risk of side effects when using zolpidem is increased by the following factors: female gender, advanced age, zolpidem intake in a dose of 10 mg and higher, simultaneous use of selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors