What is Baclofen?
Baclofen has a muscle relaxing effect and therefore helps with muscle cramps or spasms. It also provides pain relief.
What is Baclofen used for?
Doctors prescribe it for spastic muscle cramps, for example due to multiple sclerosis (MS), amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or brain damage, such as after a stroke.
It is also used for persistent hiccups, facial pain (a type of nerve pain) and alcohol addiction.
What are the Baclofen side effects?
Side effects of Baclofen mainly occur in the beginning and when the dosage increases rapidly. Elderly people and people after a stroke or with mental illnesses are particularly vulnerable to this.
The most common complaints are drowsiness, nausea and dizziness. If you have noticed other things, ask your doctor if this may have something to do with the Baclofen.
Stopping with this medication should be done gradually, usually for one to two weeks. If you stop too soon, you may experience an increase in spasticity, mental disorder or even an epileptic seizure.
How should I take Baclofen?
Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to use and how often. It may be necessary to change the dose several times to determine what works best for you. Do not take a higher dose than your doctor tells you to. Also do not take more doses than prescribed.
With which medications can Baclofen interact?
Drug interactions can change the action of your medicines or increase the risk of serious side effects.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking other products that cause drowsiness such as opioid pain relievers or cough suppressants (e.g., codeine, hydrocodone), alcohol, marijuana (cannabis), sleeping or anxiety medications (e.g., alprazolam, lorazepam, zolpidem), other muscle relaxants (e.g., carisoprodol, cyclobenzaprine), or antihistamines (e.g., cetirizine, diphenhydramine).
Check the labels of all your medicines (e.g., allergy products or cough and cold products), because they may contain ingredients that cause drowsiness. Ask your pharmacist how you can safely use these products.
What are the precautions regarding Baclofen?
Insufficient data are available on the effects of Baclofen on the unborn child. However, we do know that Baclofen passes through the placenta. A number of epileptic seizures have been reported in a new born, of which the mother used Baclofen. The use of Baclofen is therefore not recommended in pregnant women.
Baclofen also ends up in the mother’s milk in small quantities. No adverse effects have been observed (yet) in infants.
The use of Baclofen can lead to reduced responsiveness and concentration. If you have just started using Baclofen, driving a car is therefore not recommended. If you use a stable dosage for more than two weeks, without experiencing any side effects, you may participate in traffic.
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