Gabapentin is not suitable for children under 6 years of age but, if it has been prescribed for a child who is older than this, check the label carefully to make sure you are giving the correct dose.
Gabapentin is FDA approved as an anti-convulsant for the treatment of Epilepsy and seizures resulting from other disorders. It is used to treat neuralgia and neuropathy, both of which are syptoms of many different diseases; such as, diabetic neuropathy or Shingles related neuralgia, among other disorders like fibromyalgia, as well as, physical trauma.
It can help potentiate the efficacy of analgesic drugs, mostly opiate/opioid medications. It also helps mitigate the unpleasant side effects of withdrawal from opiates during titration and cessation of those drugs. It can treat Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS).
It is not a controlled substance in the United States, and has a very low abuse potential, because it’s efficacy is dose dependent, with limited bioavailability and therefore, the higher the dose the less effective it is. It’s a gabapentinoid and it’s molecular structure is similar to that of GABA , making it a GABA analog, and it works by inhibiting Voltage-dependent Calcium channels (VDCC), it often is thought of as a GABA agonist, like benzodiazepines, but that is incorrect.
Take gabapentin exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Follow all directions on your prescription label. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
The Horizant brand of gabapentin should not be taken during the day. For best results, take Horizant with food at about 5:00 in the evening.
Both Gralise and Horizant should be taken with food. Neurontin can be taken with or without food.
If you break a Neurontin tablet and take one half of it, take the other half at your next dose. Any tablet that has been broken should be used as soon as possible or within a few days.
Measure liquid medicine with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.
If your doctor changes your brand, strength, or type of gabapentin, your dosage needs may change. Ask your pharmacist if you have any questions about the new brand you receive at the pharmacy.
Do not stop using gabapentin suddenly, even if you feel fine. Stopping suddenly may cause increased seizures. Follow your doctor’s instructions about tapering your dose.
Wear a medical alert tag or carry an ID card stating that you take gabapentin. Any medical care provider who treats you should know that you take seizure medication.
This medication can cause you to have a false positive urine protein screening test. If you provide a urine sample for testing, tell the laboratory staff that you are taking gabapentin.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture.
How to take gabapentin
- Before starting this treatment, read the manufacturer’s printed information leaflet from inside the pack. The leaflet will give you more information about gabapentin and any possible side-effects from taking it.
- Take gabapentin exactly as your doctor has told you to. You will be advised to take a small dose when you first start taking gabapentin and then to increase your doses over a few days as your body gets used to it. Your doctor or pharmacist will explain this to you and your dose will also be on the label of your pack.
- Gabapentin is not suitable for children under 6 years of age but, if it has been prescribed for a child who is older than this, check the label carefully to make sure you are giving the correct dose.
- You can take gabapentin before or after meals. Swallow the tablets/capsules with a drink of water.
- Once you are taking a regular amount of gabapentin, try to take your doses at the same times each day. This will help you to avoid missing any of your doses.
- If you do forget to take a dose, take it as soon as you remember, but do not take two doses together to make up for a forgotten dose.
- If you need to take an antacid or indigestion remedy, do not take it during the two hours before and the two hours after you take gabapentin. This is because they interfere with the way gabapentin works.
Store the liquid medicine in the refrigerator. Do not freeze.