Lyrica

1 What is Lyrica?

Brand: Lyrica

Generic: Pregabalin

Lyrica is used in the treatment of partial seizures, post herpetic neuralgia and fibromyalgia (muscle pain and stiffness). It works in the brain and helps control seizures and pain.

Pregabalin is an anticonvulsant. It only helps in controlling seizures but does not cure epilepsy.

It is also a neuropathic pain agent. It is helpful in nerve pains caused by shingles, diabetes and spinal cord injury.

It is available in the form of solution and capsule only with your doctor’s prescription.

2 What to Know Before Using

If you are about to start Lyrica, speak with your doctor about what you need to know.

Before starting the treatment your doctor should be informed about condition such as

Allergy

Inform your doctor if you are allergic to any food, preservatives, dyes, or had an allergic reaction when you used this drug before.

Children

There are no studies done which prove its harmful effects on children. However, safety and efficacy has not established for children.

Elderly

This medicine does not cause any different side effects or problem than it does in younger adults. However, they may be are more sensitive to it effects and they may have age related problems in which this drug should be use cautiously.

Pregnancy

It is a category C drug. There are no studies done which proves its safety during pregnancy. It should not be used in pregnancy. Consult your doctor and discuss the benefits and risks of using Pregabalin while you are pregnant.

Breast feeding

There are no adequate studies which prove that Pregabalin pass in to breast milk. If you are using Pregabalin while nursing, discuss it with your doctor for possible risk factors.

Drug Interactions

Pregabalin interacts with many drugs. It should not be used with several drugs. Your doctor should be informed of any other medicine which you are taking as he/she may change the dosage or drug.

Some of them are listed below,

  • Angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors (enalapril), if used with Pregabalin may increases angioedema risks.
  • Benzodiazepines (lorazepam) or narcotic pain medicines (oxycodone), if used together with Pregabalin may increases drowsiness risks.
  • Thiazolidinedione antidiabetic agents (rosiglitazone) as it may increases risk of weight gain or swelling of the hands and feet.

Other Medical Conditions

Several other conditions may reduce its effectiveness. Make sure you inform your doctor of conditions such as,

  • Heart problems (heart failure, irregular heart beat such as prolonged PR interval).
  • Bleeding disorders such as low platelets.
  • Angioedema
  • Depression, behavioral changes
  • Kidney diseases or on dialysis.
  • Edema (fluid retention)

3 Proper Usage

Proper usage of Lyrica requires strict adherence to your doctor’s orders.

Pregabalin should be use as directed by your doctor. It comes with an extra patient information guidance sheet called Medication guide. Read and understand it. Do not use it more than recommended.

Take it by mouth at same time each day, with or without food.

Do not measure it with household spoon as it will not hold the required amount. Use medicine cup, measuring spoon or oral syringe for liquid form of drug.

Dosage

Drug dose is different for different people based on body weight. You should follow your doctor’s direction. Following information is average dose of this drug.

For oral dosage forms

For all the diseases mentioned below doses for children is determined by your doctor.

For seizures (epilepsy)

75 milligram (mg) two times a day or 50 mg three times a day. However, the dose should not be more than 600 mg per day.

For post herpetic neuralgia

75 to 150 mg two times a day or 50 to 100 mg three times a day. However, the dose should not be more than 600 mg per day.

For diabetic nerve pain

50 mg three times a day. However, the dose should not be more than 300 mg per day.

For fibromyalgia and spinal cord injury

75 mg two times a day.

However dose for fibromyalgia should not be more than 450 mg per day and for spinal cord injury, dose should not exceed more than 600 mg per day.

Missed dose

If you miss a dose of Pregabalin, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Storage

Store it at room temperature.

Keep it away from children

4 Precautions to Take

Before using Lyrica, there are some precautions you must take.

Your doctor should check your daily progress at regular visits.

Avoid drinking alcohol or taking other medications that are CNS depressants (sedatives, tranquilizers, barbiturates, antihistamines, muscle relaxants or anesthetics) while taking Pregabalin. It will add to the effects of alcohol and other depressants.

Pregabalin may cause

  • drowsiness,
  • dizziness,
  • blurred vision,
  • light-headedness.

These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use Pregabalin with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.

Inform your doctor immediately if you have

  • swelling of the face,
  • eyes,
  • lips,
  • gums,
  • tongue,
  • problems with swallowing or breathing,
  • skin rash,
  • redness,
  • blisters while you are using this medicine.

These are symptoms of angioedema.

Inform your doctor immediately if you notice any behavioral changes in you such as

  • restlessness,
  • agitation,
  • depressed moods
  • panic attacks.

In some patients Pregabalin may increase suicidal thoughts and actions.

Inform your doctor if you notice any weight gain or swelling of foot or legs as these symptoms may cause problem in those patients who had a history of heart attack.

Your doctor will gradually reduce the dose of this drug before stopping it completely. It is dangerous to suddenly stop taking the drug as it may cause

Pregabalin may cause serious muscle problem called myopathy. Inform your doctor immediately if you have any

  • unexplained muscle pain,
  • tenderness,
  • weakness

especially with a fever.

5 Potential Side Effects

If you notice any side effects of Lyrica, immediately make an appointment with your doctor.

All medicines have some side effects. Some people may experience none or minor side effects. Consult with your doctor if they become problematic or frequent.

Most common are,

Less common are,

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

You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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