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Seconal Sodium Pulvules Side Effects

Generic Name: secobarbital

Note: This page contains side effects data for the generic drug secobarbital. It is possible that some of the dosage forms included below may not apply to the brand name Seconal Sodium Pulvules.

For the Consumer

Applies to secobarbital: oral capsule

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Some people using this medicine have engaged in activity such as driving, eating, walking, making phone calls, or having sex and later having no memory of the activity. If this happens to you, stop taking secobarbital (the active ingredient contained in Seconal Sodium Pulvules) and talk with your doctor about another treatment for your sleep disorder.

Stop using secobarbital and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • unusual thoughts or behavior;

  • new or worsening depression;

  • confusion, hallucinations;

  • anxiety, agitation; or

  • thoughts of suicide or hurting yourself.

The sedative effects of secobarbital may be stronger in older adults.

Common side effects may include:

  • drowsiness, feeling tired;

  • "hangover" effect (drowsiness the day after a dose);

  • headache, dizziness;

  • memory problems;

  • dry mouth;

  • upset stomach; or

  • feeling restless or excited (especially in children).

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to secobarbital: injectable solution, oral capsule

Nervous system

Nervous system side effects have included somnolence, headache, confusion, hyperkinesias, ataxia, and dizziness.[Ref]


Cardiovascular side effects have included bradycardia, hypotension, and syncope.[Ref]


Gastrointestinal side effects have included nausea, vomiting, and constipation.[Ref]


Hypersensitivity reactions have included angioedema, skin rash, and exfoliative dermatitis.[Ref]


Oncologic side effects have included a possible increased frequency of malignancy (particularly liver cancer and brain tumors) following use of phenobarbital and other barbiturates.[Ref]


Other side effects have included physical and psychological dependence. Withdrawal symptoms have been reported when secobarbital (the active ingredient contained in Seconal Sodium Pulvules) therapy has been discontinued suddenly.[Ref]


Psychiatric side effects have included agitation, nightmares, nervousness, psychiatric disturbance, hallucinations, insomnia, anxiety, and abnormal thinking.[Ref]


Respiratory side effects have included hypoventilation and apnea.[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Seconal Sodium (secobarbital)." Marathon Pharmaceuticals, Deerfield, IL.

It is possible that some side effects of Seconal Sodium Pulvules may not have been reported. These can be reported to the FDA here. Always consult a healthcare professional for medical advice.

More about Seconal Sodium Pulvules (secobarbital)

Consumer resources

Other brands: Seconal, Seconal Sodium

Professional resources

Related treatment guides

Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.