Generic Name: butabarbital (byoo ta BAR bi tal)Brand names: Butisol Sodium, Busodium
Butabarbital is in a group of drugs called barbiturates (bar-BIT-chur-ates). Butabarbital slows the activity of your brain and nervous system.
Butabarbital is used short-term to treat insomnia, or as a sedative before surgery.
Butabarbital may also be used for purposes other than those listed in this medication guide.
Some people using this medicine have engaged in activity such as driving, eating, or making phone calls and later having no memory of the activity. If this happens to you, stop taking butabarbital and talk with your doctor about another treatment for your sleep disorder.Do not use butabarbital without telling your doctor if you are pregnant. It could cause harm to the unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control, and tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment. Butabarbital can make birth control pills less effective. Ask your doctor about using a non-hormone method of birth control (such as a condom, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy while taking butabarbital. Butabarbital may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Butabarbital should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it.
Some people using this medicine have engaged in activity such as driving, eating, or making phone calls and later having no memory of the activity. If this happens to you, stop taking butabarbital and talk with your doctor about another treatment for your sleep disorder.Do not take this medication if you are allergic to butabarbital, aspirin, or any kind of yellow dye (coloring in food or medicines).
Before taking butabarbital, tell your doctor if you are allergic to any drugs, or if you have:
severe asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder (COPD), or other breathing disorder;
anemia (lack of red blood cells);
a history of depression, mental illness, or suicide attempt; or
a history of drug or alcohol addiction.
If you have any of these conditions, you may not be able to use butabarbital, or you may need a dosage adjustment or special tests during treatment.Butabarbital may be habit-forming and should be used only by the person it was prescribed for. Butabarbital should never be shared with another person, especially someone who has a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a secure place where others cannot get to it. FDA pregnancy category D. This medication can cause harm to an unborn baby. Do not use butabarbital without your doctor's consent if you are pregnant. Tell your doctor if you become pregnant during treatment. Use an effective form of birth control while you are using this medication. Butabarbital can make birth control pills less effective. Ask your doctor about using a non-hormone method of birth control (such as a condom, diaphragm, spermicide) to prevent pregnancy while taking butabarbital. Butabarbital can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Take this medication exactly as it was prescribed for you. Do not take the medication in larger amounts, or take it for longer than recommended by your doctor. Follow the directions on your prescription label.Take butabarbital only when you are getting ready for several hours of sleep. You may fall asleep very quickly after taking the medicine. Take this medicine with a full glass of water. Do not mix butabarbital oral liquid with any type of fruit juice.
Measure the liquid form of butabarbital with a special dose-measuring spoon or cup, not a regular table spoon. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.
If you are taking this medicine to treat insomnia, take it only at bedtime. Call your doctor if your insomnia symptoms do not improve within 7 to 10 days of taking butabarbital.Do not change your dose of butabarbital without your doctor's advice. Do not use butabarbital for longer than 2 weeks to treat insomnia, unless your doctor has told you to. You may have withdrawal symptoms (such as anxiety, insomnia, or feeling irritable) when you stop using butabarbital after using it over a long period of time. Do not stop using butabarbital suddenly without first talking to your doctor. You may need to use less and less before you stop the medication completely. Store butabarbital at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Keep track of how many pills have been used from each new bottle of this medicine. Butabarbital is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if any person in the household is using this medicine improperly or without a prescription.
See also: Butabarbital dosage in more detail
Skip the missed dose and wait until your next regularly scheduled time to take the medicine. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.
Symptoms of a butabarbital overdose may include slow or shallow breathing, blurred vision, extreme drowsiness, feeling light-headed, or fainting.
feeling like you might pass out;
a fever or a sore throat;
sores in your mouth;
easy bruising or bleeding; or
trouble breathing or swallowing.
Less serious side effects may be more likely to occur, such as:
drowsiness or dizziness;
problems with memory or concentration;
excitement (especially in children or older adults);
joint or muscle pain;
nausea, vomiting, upset stomach, constipation; or
nightmares or increased dreaming.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Tell your doctor about any unusual or bothersome side effect. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
Usual Adult Dose for Sedation:
Daytime sedation: 15 to 30 mg 3 or 4 times daily.Preoperative sedation: 50 to 100 mg 60 to 90 minutes before surgery.
Usual Adult Dose for Insomnia:
50 to 100 mg once at bedtime
Usual Pediatric Dose for Sedation:
Preoperative sedation: 2 to 6 mg/kgMaximum dose: 100 mg
The following drugs can interact with butabarbital. Tell your doctor if you are using any of these:
a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin);
theophylline (Theo-Dur, Theochron, Theolair, Slo-Bid, others);
rifampin (Rifadin, Rifamate, Rimactane);
a beta-blocker such as metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol), propranolol (Inderal, InnoPran), and others;
an MAO inhibitor such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or tranylcypromine (Parnate);
a calcium channel blocker such as felodipine (Plendil) or verapamil (Calan, Covera); or
steroids such as prednisone (Orasone, Deltasone), prednisolone (Prelone, Delta Cortef), methylprednisolone (Medrol), and others.
This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with butabarbital. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.