NeurologyAdvisor: Zolpidem with placebo is an effective acute and extended treatment for patients with chronic insomnia, according to study results published in Sleep Medicine.

Prior studies have shown that for chronic insomnia, intermittent dosing approach is comparable to nightly dosing. However, the data to support intermittent dosing are limited. Previously, the researchers evaluated a modified intermittent dosing regimen with placebo given on non-medication nights, based on the principles of conditioning and reinforcement. The data suggested that with the partial reinforcement regimen, including a month of full dose nightly treatment with zolpidem (priming), subjects with chronic insomnia who switched to intermittent dosing with medication and placebos were able to maintain their treatment responses.

The objective of the current study was to determine whether priming is required for partial reinforcement or whether intermittent dosing with placebos can be used for acute and extended treatment.

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