Gabapentin (Neurontin) is a very important drug produced by Pfizer pharmaceutical company. The drug is used for the treatment of epilepsy or seizure. It can also be used to relieve nerve pain. It is no longer under probability whether Gabapentin has side effects or not. Studies carried out on the drug under clinical trials revealed some Gabapentin side effects. Some Gabapentin side effects can be deadly and therefore every user of Gabapentin should report to his or her physician if he or she notices some symptoms after taking the drugs.
The precaution to be taken in order to checkmate Gabapentin side effects is to avoid taking the drug unless a doctor or a pharmacy prescribes the drug for you. Gabapentin is a prescription drug and therefore should be taken with the advice of a medical doctor or a pharmacy. Self medication can be dangerous when it comes to Gabapentin. Secondly, you need to inform your doctor about your medical history before taking this drug. This will enable the doctor to know whether to give you this drug or not. Remember that your doctor will not know unless you let him. If you are allergic to the drug let him know also. When you notice any of the Gabapentin side effects after taking the drugs you should quickly report to your doctor or pharmacy for medical attention.
You can withdraw the drug if the symptoms continue. One of the Gabapentin side effects that were noted during the research was drowsiness and dizziness. Do not drive if such Gabapentin side effects occur to you. The reason for this is very obvious. You are exposing yourself danger if you are driving under such condition. You can easily sleep off while you are on steering and this can cause ghastly motor accident.
Gabapentin (Neurontin) can limit alertness. In line with the above you should not engage yourself in any activities that require alertness if you take Gabapentin until you are such that you can fully attend to what you are doing. Elderly people are more vulnerable to some Gabapentin side effects. In the light of the above, they should be very careful in taking the drugs. Gabapentin side effects can also occur in children. Given their age, they should be kept under surveillance when they take such drugs. The effects of Gabapentin on nursing mothers have not been known and therefore nursing mothers should see a doctor before they can take this drug.
Overview of Gabapentin (Neurontin) Side Effects
Virtually every medicine has one or two side effects associated with it. Sometimes, the side effects may differ from one person to another due to differences in body system. The above can also be said of Gabapentin. Gabapentin has been discovered to cause certain side effects in its users. The Gabapentin side effects differ from patient to patient. In some people Gabapentin side effects are severe, while it is minute in some people or even do not occur at all. Such minor side effects of Gabapentin do not require any treatment but serious ones have to be treated as directed by a physician or pharmacy.
Over the year, research has been carried out on Gabapentin side effects by experts in clinical trials. This research was performed on two groups. One group of people were using Gabapentin while the other group of people were not using the drug. Gabapentin side effects on these group of people using the drug were noted down. This research makes it possible for the expert to notice how the side effects occurred and the frequency. It also helps them to compare it with the group of people that are not taking drug.
According the to the research the commonest Gabapentin (Neurontin) side effects are as follows:
• Dizziness – about 28% of people taking Gabapentin suffer from this side effect. Dizziness is the commonest among all the Gabapentin side effects.
• Drowsiness – next to dizziness is drowsiness. In the research 21.4 percent of the people who were taking Gabapentin suffer from this side effect.
• Coordination problem – this side effect occurs in 12.5% of the entire people who were taking the drug during the experiment.
• Infections and fever – some infections occur in 10.9 percent of the population of people that were using the drug during the experiment, while 10.1% of the population have fever.
• Nausea and vomiting – about 8.4% suffer from nausea after taking the drugs.
There are other Gabapentin side effects that were noted in the experiment. Such minor Gabapentin side effects include:
➢ Swelling and fluid retention in the feet, arms, hands and legs – 8.3%
➢ Unusual eye movement – 8.3%
The rest of the side effects occur in lower rate ranging from 7% – 1%. Such side effects are
• Blurred vision
• Dry mouth
• Sore throat
• Nervousness speech problem
There are a number of these side effects discovered during the research that are not listed here.
Gabapentin (Neurontin) Side Effects in the Body Systems
Gabapentin (Neurontin) side effects occur in the different system of the body. One of the systems of the body that the side effects of Gabapentin have been noticed is the nervous system. Gabapentin side effects in the nervous system are somnolence, dizziness, tiredness and headache. These cases occur in more than ten percent of the people treated with Gabapentin during the studies that were carried out on Gabapentin. There are other side effects of Gabapentin that affect the nervous system. The following cases are also observed.
• Abnormal dream
• Babinski sign
• Personality disorder
• Orofacial dyskinesia
Besides the Gabapentin side effects in the nervous system, there are also other side effects of Gabapentin in the gastrointestinal system of the body. About 3% of the patients treated with Gabapentin have these Gabapentin side effects. Some of the gastrointestinal side effects of Gabapentin are Glossitis, gum haemorrhage, stomatitis, elevated rate of salivation, gastroenteritis and painful swell around the mouth region. There are other gastrointestinal side effects of Gabapentin which are noted. They include
• Enlarged salivary gland
• Lip haemorrhage
• Oesophageal spasm
• Dry mouth
• Dental abnormality
• Increased appetite
These are to mention but a few of them.
Such Gabapentin side effects are as withdrawal effects are also noticed. When a patient stop using Gabapentin there are symptoms that follow such withdrawal. The number of people that are affected by this withdrawal of Gabapentin therapy effect is minute – just about two percent of the people treated. The Gabapentin side effects are
• Dizziness, nausea and vomiting
Other include tinnitus, loss of hearing, otitis, loss taste, unusual taste, fullness of the ear, perforation of the ear drum, Eustachian tube dysfunction, and unusual smell.
Gabapentin side effects also occur in the cardiovascular system of the body. Above 1% of the people treated have high blood pressure as well as low blood pressure which occur infrequently. There are other cardiovascular Gabapentin side effects that do not occur frequently. They include:
• Angina pectoris
• Peripheral vascular disorder
• Atrial fibrillation
• Pulmonary thrombophlebitis
• Heart block and others
There are also some problems that occur in some patients that are treated with Gabapentin such as cataract, blurred vision, conjunctivitis, dryness of the eye, bilateral ptosis and photophobia. In other cases of Gabapentin side effects, two suffer from aggressive behaviour.
What You Should Know about Gabapentin Side Effects
Gabapentin (Neurontin) is a drug manufactured for the treatment of seizure. It can also be used as pain relief drug. Like any drug, Gabapentin has some side effects. It is quite usual for conventional medicine to be associated with some side effects. Experiments conducted with Gabapentin have shown there are some side effects associated with the drugs. Having full knowledge about Gabapentin side effects will be of benefit to you. This article will help you to know what to do if any of the Gabapentin side effects occurs to you.
One thing you should know about Gabapentin side effects is that there are some serious side effects that are associated with Gabapentin. These Gabapentin side effects may not be occurring regularly or frequently but they can be very serious when they occur. Consequently, if the occur you should report immediate to your physician and or pharmacist for medical attention. Such side effects may include:
• Hostility to people around
• Depression and gloomy look
• Acute dizziness, coordination problems and confusion which seem to last for a long time
Some of the Gabapentin side effects may be as a result of allergic reaction to the drug. Such signs of allergic reaction include:
• Urticaria and rashes
Sometimes, people who use Gabapentin may suffer from depressive behavior. Any person who suffers from the above mentioned Gabapentin side effects should immediately seek medical attention. It may be deadly to delay visiting a doctor for attention.
Besides the above mentioned Gabapentin (Neurontin) side effects, there are other side effects that have been discovered in studies carried out on Gabapentin in clinical trial. These Gabapentin side effects are not as serious as the above mentioned ones. But this does not mean that they should not be taken care of when they occur. The rates at which these side effects occur are minimal and they are not common. This is why it is always difficult to tell whether these side effects are caused by Gabapentin (Neurontin) or not. Some of the side effects are:
• Weight loss
• Severe headache
• Hiatal hernia
• Sexual problems.
The above do not exhaust the list of side effects of Gabapentin
Jackie Hogan, MS, RD is a registered dietitian based in Los Angeles. She is a member of the California Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (CAND-LAD) and the Dietitians in Integrative and Functional Medicine Practice Group and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Jackie has been featured on Women’s Health, Fitness Magazine, Women’s Fitness, and Men’s Fitness magazine.