Sleep problems with M/R Madopar?

Being a 63 year old female with Parkinson’s, you don’t get a lot of sympathy from the medical profession when you mention that you don’t sleep well. They ALL come back with - it’s your age. Grrrrrr! Anyway, a couple of times last week I forgot to take my 10pm Modified Release Madopar and I slept for 6 hours instead of my usual 3 hours asleep, 2 awake, then between 30 mins and 2 hours sleep again. I’ve learned to function on between 4 and 5 hours sleep. Anyway, I’ve not taken my 10pm tablet since and I am sleeping for 6 hours a night. I might wake momentarily but go back to sleep again within minutes. I always thought medication was at the source of my sleeplessness but didn’t realise it was that one specific tablet causing me grief. I’ve not taken anything else in its place and am feeling no ill-effects as a result of cutting down my dose so will continue along until things change. It’s pointless asking my Consultant because I haven’t seen him for over a year and heavens only knows when I will get a new appointment through. Also, we no longer have a Parkinson’s nurse for our area so thank goodness for this Forum!
Has anyone else had the same problem and solved it by cutting out their modified release tablet?

HI @Dollydlollop

Welcome back to the forum, I am sure you will receive lots of comments. I understand that you do not have a Parkinson’s nurse in your area, however if you contact our helpline on 0808 800 0303 or email [email protected] they can put you in touch with one of our Parkinson’s nurse for some general advise. I hope this helps.

Sue - Moderation team

Hello Dolly,
I’m 64, female, and have been dx for 9 years. I also had problems with taking CR Levodopa at night. The best way to describe it is that it feels like I’ve had too much caffeine and my mind won’t go into sleep mode. If you are sleeping better w/o it why take it? My problems with CR were worse earlier in my dx. I have recently gone back on it and the benefits are outweighing the occasional sleep issues. Without it I have trouble moving in bed and the pain will wake me frequently.

I have always been puzzled by the effects of Levodopa. During the day, my immediate release (Sinemet) Levodopa makes me sleepy but at night the medication keeps me awake. Can anyone explain this?

Take care, Iris

Hi Iris
I’m still not taking my M/R Madopar and I now sleep, on average, 6 hours a night in one go rather than waking every two hours or so. The other really weird thing I’ve noticed is that, again since stopping the M/R I’m able to drive at night again. I got to the stage where driving at night was so difficult I dreaded having to do it. I found my spatial awareness was such that I didn’t know where I was on the road and felt almost as though I was driving blind. Not only dazzled by headlights but when going round a sharp bend I had no perception of where the verge was - it was like driving in blinkers. I’m now back to normal and can, to my husband’s immense relief as he drinks and I don’t, drive happily after dark.