The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics
FROM
ISSUE
1463
Suvorexant (Belsomra) for Insomnia
The full article is available to subscribers Subscriber Login   
Revised 6/30/15: In Table 2, the Pregnancy Category for flurazepam is "X" (not "C").

The FDA has approved suvorexant (Belsomra – Merck), the first orexin receptor antagonist to become available in the US, for treatment of sleep-onset and/or sleep-maintenance insomnia.

DRUGS FOR INSOMNIA — Benzodiazepine receptor agonists, benzodiazepines, the melatonin receptor agonist ramelteon (Rozerem, and generics), and low doses of the antidepressant doxepin (Silenor, and generics) are effective and generally safe for treatment of insomnia. Benzodiazepine receptor agonists such as zolpidem (Ambien, and others) are the most widely prescribed hypnotics in the US, but they can impair next-day driving ability, increase the risk of falls in the elderly, and rarely cause anterograde amnesia, hallucinations, and complex sleep-related behaviors that occur without conscious awareness. Over-the-counter antihistamines marketed as "sleep-aids" are also widely used, but they can cause ... more       Show References Hide References

The Medical Letter is a subscriber-funded nonprofit organization that publishes critical appraisals of new prescription drugs and comparative reviews of drugs for common diseases.

Would you like to read the rest of this article?  Gain access below.

Subscribe
Subscriptions to The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics include:
  • Print version published and mailed biweekly (26 issues/year)
  • Immediate Online access to current issue and archives from 1988 to the present
  • Mobile access to our mobile site and free apps for iOS, Android and Kindle
  • FREE online per issue CME/CE
Free trial offer
3 Free Issues of The Medical Letter on Drugs and Therapeutics mailed to your home or office PLUS online access.
Try a Free Trial Subscription
Purchase this article:
Title: Suvorexant (Belsomra) for Insomnia
Article code: 1463a
 Electronic, downloadable article - $25