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What should I know about taking Lyrica?

Lyrica (pregabalin) is a prescription drug used to help control seizures, treat fibromyalgia and manage nerve pain caused by diabetes and other conditions.

It’s important to know that Lyrica 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 

Lyrica can also cause suicidal thoughts or behavior, although this is rare. This medication can also make you sleepy or dizzy, so you shouldn’t drive, operate machinery or engage in any other potentially dangerous activities until you know how it affects you. Lyrica may also 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 or if it would harm a nursing baby, so you shouldn’t take it while breastfeeding. 

Before you start taking Lyrica, you should give your doctor or healthcare provider a complete medical history, and discuss any health conditions you have. You should also tell him or her if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, are breastfeeding or if you plan to father a child. Give him or her a list of all your medications, including prescription and over-the-counter drugs, as well as any supplements, including vitamins.

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.

Store Lyrica at room temperature in its original package. Keep it out of reach of children.

Dawn Marcus
Neurology

Lyrica (pregabalin) is used as a pain therapy for people with nerve pain (neuropathic pain) or fibromyalgia. It is related to gabapentin, which is also an effective therapy for neuropathic pain. Some studies also show gabapentin is effective for fibromyalgia. The antidepressants duloxetine and milnacipran area also approved for treating fibromyalgia. All of these drugs have modest benefit and are used in combination with other effective nondrug treatments, like exercise, relaxation techniques, stress management, etc. 

Lyrica (pregabalin) is a prescription drug used to relieve nerve pain associated with diabetes, shingles or spinal cord injuries, treat fibromyalgia and manage seizures. It works by decreasing the amount of pain signals that your body sends to damaged nerves.

Lyrica can have some serious side effects, including the possibility of a life-threatening allergic reaction. Stop taking this medication and seek medical attention immediately if you have swelling of your mouth, face or neck; develop a rash, blisters or hives; or experience trouble breathing. If you have had reactions like this in the past,make sure to tell your doctor before you start taking this medication.

Some people who have taken this type of medication, called an antiepileptic drug, have had suicidal thoughts or behavior, as well as mood changes and depression. If you experience any of these side effects, which are rare, call your doctor right away. Lyrica might also make you dizzy or tired, which may impair your ability to drive or operate machinery.

Before you start taking Lyrica, you should tell your doctor if you or your sexual partner want to become pregnant, or if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Researchers are unclear whether taking Lyrica can cause birth defects or harm a nursing infant. Talk to your doctor in order to weigh the pros and cons of taking the drug.

Before you start taking Lyrica, you should also give your doctor a complete medical history, including any health conditions you have. Give him or her a list of all of your medications, including prescription or over-the-counter drugs and dietary and herbal supplements. Once you're on Lyrica, do not start taking another drug or supplement without talking with your doctor first.

Take Lyrica as prescribed. If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember, unless it's almost time for your next pill. In that case, skip the missed dose. Don’t take a double dose of Lyrica to make up for one you missed. Don't stop taking Lyrica without talking to your doctor, because stopping this drug suddenly may trigger unpleasant symptoms, such as headache or nausea. If you want to stop taking Lyrica, your doctor may gradually taper your dose to avoid these problems.

Store Lyrica at room temperature away from moisture, in its original packaging. Keep out of the reach of children.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.