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Generic Name: secobarbital (SEE koe BAR bi tal)
Brand Name: Seconal Sodium
Physician reviewed Seconal Sodium patient information - includes Seconal Sodium description, dosage and directions.
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Drug Information:
Seconal Sodium is a barbiturate (bar-BIT-chur-ate) that slows the activity of your brain and nervous system. Seconal Sodium is used short-term to treat insomnia, or as a sedative before surgery. Seconal Sodium may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. You should not use Seconal Sodium if you have severe liver disease, severe breathing problems, or porphyria. Some people using Seconal Sodium have engaged in activity such as driving, eating, walking, making phone calls, or having sex and later having no memory of the activity. Learn more

Seconal Side Effects

Seconal Sodium Side Effects

Note: This document contains side effect information about secobarbital. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Seconal Sodium.

For the Consumer

Applies to secobarbital: oral capsule

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:

  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • New or worse behavior or mood changes like depression or thoughts of killing yourself.
  • Feeling confused.
  • Feeling agitated.
  • Feeling nervous and excitable.
  • Hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not there).
  • Memory problems or loss.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:

  • Feeling sleepy.
  • Feeling sleepy the next day.
  • Dizziness.
  • Headache.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Dry mouth.
  • Upset stomach.

These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may also report side effects at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to secobarbital: injectable solution, oral capsule

Nervous system

Common (1% to 10%): Somnolence

Frequency not reported: Ataxia, central nervous system (CNS) depression, dizziness, headache, hyperkinesia, syncope


Frequency not reported: Abnormal thinking, agitation, anxiety, confusion, dependence, excitement, hallucinations, insomnia, nervousness, nightmares, other complex behaviors, psychiatric disturbance, sleep driving


Frequency not reported: Fever, tolerance, withdrawal symptoms


Frequency not reported: Constipation, nausea, vomiting


Frequency not reported: Apnea, hypoventilation


Frequency not reported: Angioedema, hypersensitivity reactions


Frequency not reported: Exfoliative dermatitis, skin rashes


Frequency not reported: Bradycardia, hypotension


Frequency not reported: Megaloblastic anemia


Frequency not reported: Liver damage


Frequency not reported: Injection site reactions

Editorial References and Review

Medically reviewed by BestRx Medical Team Last updated on 1/1/2020.

Source: Drugs.com Seconal