Gabapentin is a well-known drug to treat epilepsy. It is also known as an anticonvulsant medicine. It affects the nerves and chemicals in the body that are involved in the cause of epileptic attacks and some particular kinds of pains. Gabapentin is used to treat nerve pain because Nerve pain is often not relieved by standard painkillers like Ibuprofen. It is also used in combination with some other sedatives to improve your condition.
Some common side effects of gabapentin
All these side effects Apply to gabapentin oral capsule oral suspension and oral tablet or any medication in which gabapentin is used. Along with its desired results, gabapentin may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these ill side effects may coincide, if they do occur, they may need medical attention. Check with your doctor immediately if any severe side effects occur while taking gabapentin:
These common side effects may happen in one in a hundred people. These effects are usually very mild and go away by themselves.
- feeling sleepy, tired or dizzy
The most common gabapentin side effect is drowsiness. Every time you feel tired or dizzy.
Those sleepy feelings are more evident when you first start taking gabapentin. Over time, it slowly goes away as your body adjusts to the specific medication. If the drowsiness doesn’t go away and you begin to feel more cranky, must consult to the doctor who can work with you on change the dose, or may suggest weaning you off.
- It may cause (nausea)
This is again a pervasive side effect and slowly goes away with the adjustment of the body to medication. If you are uncomfortable with this situation then must consult your doctor
- You feel like diarrhea like symptoms
start feeling cramps, vomiting, etc. these signs may adjust with time, but if you don’t control them or feeling irritating, consult a doctor to change the dose.
- Getting more infections than usual
also affects our immunity, and you become more prone to infections. If you find anything which is bothering you so much, then consult a doctor.
- it may cause swollen arms and legs
These medicines affect your kidneys if you don’t drink enough water while taking this medication. The way of excretion is through the urinary tract. Gabapentin can disturb the kidney functioning, which results in swollen foot and legs.
- you can experience blurred vision
Initially, you can feel a blurred image. You may think that you are eyesight is getting week. Do not stop using gabapentin without checking with your doctor. Stopping the medicine immediately may cause seizures.
- weight gain
Gabapentin can make you feel hungry, and you start to eat more. You don’t feel full, so we can say that you can gain weight with gabapentin. Some can you crave certain types of foods like those high in carbohydrates or fat.
These side effects are widespread, and any person who is taking this medicine can face it. It is not necessary that all signs appear simultaneously.
- Increased sensitivity to touch and pain
Patients using gabapentin become more sensitive to pain and touch. They feel pain with more severity as compare to a normal routine.
- Dark urine
It may be due to the content of gabapentin which excreted through urine from the body.
Serious Side Effects of Gabapentin
Very few people taking gabapentin have some severe problems. Serious side effects can occur. These effects can’t be denied. Consult the doctor straight away if you have a severe side effect, including:
- Suicidal thoughts
This is again rare abut serious side effect, gabapentin not only affects our thought process but also disturb the hormonal balance. Thoughts of hurting or killing yourself come in the mind of the patient. A small number of people face such a situation while using gabapentin. It is impervious to screening, recognize, and applicably manage the patients with underlying psychiatric disorders proceeding to pain management with gabapentin. Therefore, it is crucial to raise awareness of gabapentin as a potential cause of sadness, hostile behavior, and suicidal ideation.
jaundice is a health condition in which the skin and whites of the eyes and turn yellow because of very high levels of bilirubin. Some patients can encounter this condition while using gabapentin, and maybe some other underlying health conditions make it worse.
- Unusual bruises
This is again one of the unwanted side effects. Significant injuries or bleeding can occur with the use of gabapentin. these may be some warning signs of a blood disorder
- inflamed pancreas
Long-lasting stomach pain, feeling sick or vomiting – these may be warning signs of an inflamed pancreas. It may need to seek medical attention or discontinues the medications.
Hallucinations are sensations that appear to be real but are created within the mind.
Patients using gabapentin can experience the seeing of things that are not there, and they can experience the body sensations like crawling feelings on the body. This is a serious side effect and needs to consult the doctor immediately.
- Panic attacks
A panic attack is a penetrating feeling of sudden fear that occurs when there’s no apparent threat or danger. If patients have an underlying health condition related to panic attacks, then this situation becomes worse with the use of gabapentin.
- Serious allergic reaction
In rare cases, it’s possible to have a severe allergic reaction like anaphylaxis to gabapentin. Sometimes gabapentin may cause serious or life-threatening allergic reactions to some people. However, this is very rare. These initial symptoms may be the first signs of a severe reaction: Patient can experience the skin rash, hives, difficulty in breathing and fever
- Hearing loss
A reversible hearing loss in patients who are using gabapentin is also reported. Consult the doctor if you feel a difference in your hearing ability.
Side Effects in Men and Women
There is a lack of scientific evidence and research in comparing the effects of gabapentin in men and women. It does not affect men and women differently. Common side effects are the same for both men and women. A brand label Neurontin of gabapentin claims “that there are no significant gender differences regarding the use of gabapentin.”
“The only different side effects between men and women may relate to sexual dysfunctional. Both men and women may lose their sex drive by taking gabapentin.
Some Rare side effects in men
- Cystitis and abnormal ejaculation abnormal,
- swollen penis, gynecomastia,
- nocturia, which directly linked to prostatic hyperplasia
- swollen scrotum and irritation
- urinary frequency, you may need to urinate on a frequent basis
- Urinary urgency, urine abnormality. It’s hard to control the urination for longer times.
Side Effects in Children
Children are exceptionally delicate, and their body systems too. Gabapentin can also affect your children in a different manner. Some side effects are typical and commonly linked with gabapentin use like Weight gain, hunger, nausea, headache, etc.
- Behavior changes
Mood swings and behavior problems can become worse while taking gabapentin. As children are not emotionally stable and strong, so it’s hard for them to control their mood swings and anger. Mood swings can vary from mild to severe behavioral changes. Parents find it challenging to deal with their tantrums, aggression directed toward others, hyperactivity, and rudeness.
- Poor sleep and indigestion
Poor sleep is also a side effect of gabapentin, which further disturbs the digestion and growth hormones in children.
- Rare allergic reactions in children
If your child has some underlying health issues, then it may become more prone to allergies.it happens in rare cases hen use of gabapentin cause allergies.
Your child may encounter some of these side effects while taking gabapentin. Check your child’s doctor if your child continues to have any of these side effects. These signs are reversible by reducing the gabapentin amount.
Gabapentin Side Effects Linked with Long Term Use
Every medicine has side effects linked with its prolonged use. Similarly, gabapentin also has some side effects linked with its prolonged use.
- According to research, people with prior kidney disease may experience potentially fatal toxicity when taking gabapentin.
- Gabapentin may cause other long term memory loss with extended use
- Its prolonged treatment with gabapentin may weaken muscles and respiratory failure.
Gabapentin Side effects linked with overdosage
These effects only occurred in patients who used high doses of gabapentin or tried to treat the diseases for gabapentin is not allowed. Sometimes these symptoms are labeled as withdrawal symptoms.
- Anxiety without any specific reason
- Confusion, and fogy’s brain
- rapid heart rate and excessive sweating without physical activity
- hot flashes
- nausea and irritation
How Can One Avoid Gabapentin Side Effects?
First of all, talk to your specific doctor about what precautions you can take for side effects from gabapentin.
Ask your doctor for guidance and advice for a diet and exercise to manage your weight if you are concerned about potential/ future weight gain from gabapentin.
- Drink plenty of water, increase fluid intake to avoid gabapentin effect on kidneys
- Don’t drive a vehicle or operate heavy machinery until you maintain your balance, and you can deal with blurred vision.
Talk to your doctor about the recommendation for over-the-counter medications that can help to release you from some standard digestive system side effects.
Every medicine has side effects; similarly, gabapentin also has side effects with its desired results. Gabapentin side effects can disturb your normal functioning, and may you want to stop taking the drug. However, it is not a possible solution. Don’t stop taking gabapentin without consulting with your doctor. Stopping gabapentin can cause grave problems, such as withdrawal symptoms or the return of epilepsy attacks. Your doctor can guide you about taking the drug safely.