It’s important to know that Lyrica (pregabalin), a prescription drug used to help control seizures, treat fibromyalgia and manage nerve pain, can have serious side effects. It can cause a dangerous, even life-threatening, allergic reaction, so you should stop taking it and call your doctor right away if you notice:
- swelling of your face, mouth, lips, tongue, gums, throat or neck
- trouble breathing
- hives, blisters or a rash
You should not take this drug if you’ve ever had an allergic reaction to Lyrica, pregabalin or any of Lyrica’s ingredients. Before you start taking Lyrica, give your doctor a complete medical history, and be sure to mention if you’ve ever had a condition known as angioedema, a type of allergic reaction. You should also tell him or her about all your medications, whether prescription or over-the-counter, as well as any supplements you take. Some medications may increase the likelihood of having an allergic reaction or interact with Lyrica in other ways.
Lyrica can also, rarely, cause suicidal thoughts or behavior. Tell your doctor if you start having symptoms of depression while you’re on the drug. Also tell your doctor if you notice any unusual changes in your mood or behavior, or if you have thoughts of suicide or of hurting yourself.
Lyrica can make you sleepy or dizzy, so you shouldn’t drive or engage in any other potentially dangerous activities until you know how it affects you.
Before you start Lyrica, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, are breastfeeding or if you plan to father a child. Researchers aren’t sure if Lyrica is safe to take during pregnancy, so a woman should take it only if its possible benefits outweigh its potential risks. Lyrica may raise the risk for birth defects if a man fathers a child while on the drug, although researchers aren’t certain about this. It’s also not clear whether Lyrica passes into breast milk, so women shouldn’t take it while breastfeeding.
Take Lyrica as directed. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember, unless it’s almost time for your next one. In that case, skip the missed dose; don’t take two doses at the same time. Talk to your doctor before stopping Lyrica. He or she may need to gradually taper your dose, because stopping suddenly can cause uncomfortable symptoms.