'Smart Drug' Modafinil Actually Works, Study Shows

The "smart drug" modafinil actually does work for some people, improving their performance on long and complex tasks, also enhancing decision-making and planning skills, a new review of studies finds.

Modafinil, also known by its brand name Provigil, is approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat people with sleep disorders such as narcolepsy. But the majority of the drug's users – such as students who take it to study for exams – use it off-label, believing it may help them focus. This is despite the lack of strong evidence to date showing that the drug actually works this way.

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