Secobarbital is used to treat insomnia for brief periods. It is also used to relieve anxiety before surgery.


What is Secobarbital?

Secobarbital is a barbiturate. It works by slowing down brain activity.


How should Secobarbital be taken?

Secobarbital is consumed via oral route. For insomnia, it is taken as needed before bedtime. Against anxiety associated with operations, it is generally consumed one to two hours before surgery. 


Side effects associated with Secobarbital

Possible side effects of Secobarbital include the following:

  • Drowsiness
  • Insomnia
  • Nightmares
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nervousness
  • Agitation
  • Excitement
  • Restlessness
  • Confusion
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation


It is important to contact a doctor right away if the drug triggers:

  • Hallucinations
  • Slow or shallow breathing
  • A slowed heartbeat
  • Urticaria
  • Rash
  • Itch
  • Swelling in the face, throat, tongue,  throat, eyes, hands, feet, ankles or calves
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Hoarseness


Contraindications and warnings associated with the use of Secobarbital

Secobarbital should be taken for short periods of time. Taken for more than two weeks, it can reduce the effectiveness of the treatment and cause dependence. Intake should not be stopped without consulting your doctor, who will inform you how to gradually reduce the doses taken. Keep in mind that Secobarbital can reduce the effectiveness of hormonal contraceptives and impair the ability to drive and operate hazardous machinery. Its adverse effects can be aggravated by alcohol.

Before taking Secobarbital, it is important to inform your doctor:

  • If you have any allergies to the active substance, its excipients, other barbiturates or any other drugs
  • If you are taking any other medicinal products, herbal supplements or sedatives. Mentionining in particular: anticoagulants, antihistamines, doxycycline, griseofulvin, hormone replacement therapy, MAO inhibitors, antidepressants, painkillers, cold medications, allergy medicines, anticonvulsants, muscle relaxants, steroids ( if taken orally), sedatives, tranquilizers and drugs for insomnia
  • If you suffer (or have suffered) from porphyria, problems that cause shortness of breath, difficulty breathing or liver disease
  • If you abuse (or have abused) alcohol or if you use (or have used) drugs
  • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding


It is important to inform surgeons and dentists of any ongoing treatment with Secobarbital.