Modafinil is generally considered to be one of the most efficient psychostimulants partly due to an interesting lack of serious side effects. While the amount of people reporting side effects is low, they do exist and caution should be exercised when consuming Modafinil or Armodafinil for the first time, mainly to rule out the danger of allergic reactions.
It is good to note that if you are prescribed Modafinil from your doctor, they likely believe the benefits from using it will far outweigh any of the potential side effects.
Common side effects of this drug may include anxiety, dizziness, headache, nausea and disturbance to your sleep. If you experience one or more of these side effects for an extended period of time, consult your doctor.
There are a few more serious, though rare, side effects which include, change to mental state and/or mood, agitation, confusion, depression, hallucinations and other forms of distorted thinking.
Should you experience any of the following symptoms, call emergency services immediately; accelerated and/or uneven heartbeat, chest pain or any signs of infection such as a fever or continuing sore throat.
There have been few cases of allergic reactions, but they may include (though not limited to) the following; blisters or peeling of the skin, itching or swelling (especially around the face, tongue or throat), skin rash, severe dizziness or heavy breathing.
When discussing this drug with your doctor it is important to let them know if you have any previous or existing illnesses that affect your blood pressure, cardiac or liver problems, kidney diseases or any mental disorders. You should also inform your doctor of any drug or alcohol abuse issues.
Before taking Modafinil, it is important to inform your doctor of any other prescribed, non-prescribed drugs or herbal supplements you are currently taking so there are no adverse reactions. In particular, it is important to mention whether or not you are taking any drugs that lower blood pressure (including beta-blockers), anticoagulants like Warfarin, and drugs that would affect your hepatic enzyme activity (i.e. activity that would speed the process of eliminating drugs from your system) such as rifabutin and phenobarbital.
There is a possibility that Modafinil may speed up or slow down your liver enzymes which help excrete other drugs from the body. If you are taking certain antidepressants, this might also affect their effect. In particular, MAO (monoamine oxidase inhibitors) antidepressants do not mix well with Modafinil. It is suggested to stop their use two weeks prior, during and after use of Modafinil to avoid serious problems.
Modafinil can inhibit the effectiveness of hormonal contraceptives like the birth control pill, patch, or ring, so it would be wise to use an alternative form of birth control during your time on Modafinil and up to one month afterwards to avoid unwanted pregnancy.
Be wary of cold medications that contain ingredients like pseudoephederine or ephedra during use as they may lead to increased heart rate and higher blood pressure. Alternatively, ingesting high levels of caffeine in conjunction with Modafinil will have the same effects.