The Best Muscle Relaxants for Every Type of Pain
While serious side effects vary by drug, any drug can cause a serious allergic reaction. Symptoms may include hives, difficulty breathing, or swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat. Research is lacking on whether or not antispasmodics are more effective in treating muscle pain and spasms than NSAIDs or acetaminophen. Antispasmodics have more side effects than NSAIDs and acetaminophen, so it’s important to talk to your healthcare provider about the benefits and risks of taking these medications. Although all skeletal muscle relaxants should be used with caution in older patients, diazepam especially should be avoided in older patients or in patients with significant cognitive or hepatic impairment. Skeletal muscle relaxants are often prescribed for musculoskeletal conditions including low back pain, neck pain, fibromyalgia, tension headaches, and myofascial pain syndrome.
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One study found that patients with acute lower back pain treated with ibuprofen (NSAID) alone had similar pain and function levels to patients treated with baclofen and ibuprofen (7). If you experience a sudden can you take flexeril with hydrocodone onset of muscle spasms or severe pain, or if you suspect that you have a chronic problem with muscle spasms, see a medical provider. Muscle relaxers are medications that reduce muscle spasms and muscle pain.
Spasticity is a disruption in muscle movement patterns that causes certain muscles to contract all at once when you try to move or even at rest. It’s usually caused by damage to nerve pathways within your brain or spinal cord that control movement and stretch reflexes. Do not take other medicines unless they have been discussed with your doctor.
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Muscle relaxants are used to treat muscle spasticity (stiffness or rigidity). This can be caused by conditions such as cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, and stroke. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved three muscle relaxants—baclofen, tizanidine, and dantrolene—to treat muscle spasticity. Botulinum toxin is approved to treat a variety of medical conditions that affect how the body functions. The comparison between Baclofen vs. cyclobenzaprine starts at what conditions they’re known to treat. Lioresal is used for managing muscle spasticity in multiple sclerosis.
In preclinical research, cyclobenzaprine reduced skeletal muscle hyperactivity. Research indicates that it primarily acts within the central nervous system in the brain stem. Cyclobenzaprine does not work directly on skeletal muscle or the neuromuscular junction, although an overlapping action on the spinal cord may contribute to its overall skeletal muscle relaxant activity.
This includes prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicines and herbal or vitamin supplements. Do not suddenly stop using this medicine without checking first with your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely. Unwanted side effects (eg, hallucinations, seizures, high fever, rhabdomyolysis) may occur if baclofen is stopped suddenly. Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.
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However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related kidney, liver, or heart problems, which may require caution for patients receiving this medicine. Addiction Resource does not offer medical diagnosis, treatment, or advice. Only trained and licensed medical professionals can provide such services. If you or anyone you know is undergoing a severe health crisis, call a doctor or 911 immediately.
- There’s an oral version of it and one that can be injected directly into the spinal cord.
- Also known as Tizanidine, Zanaflex is used for spasticity in patients with multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy.
- Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatric-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of baclofen oral liquid and granules in the elderly.
- Additional potential side effects of this drug include fatigue, headache, nervousness, dilated pupils, hallucinations, increased heart rate, and digestion issues (1, 8).
- Muscle relaxants do carry side effects just like any other medications.
- They are more often prescribed for muscle pain due to a medical condition, such as cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, or spinal cord injury.
An overall grade was allocated for the body of evidence for each key question. No randomized trial was rated good quality, and there was little evidence of rigorous adverse event assessment in included trials or observational studies. Maybe a new workout routine put you through the wringer, or slouching over your laptop has started to take its toll on your back and neck. Minor soreness or aches happen all the time for any number of reasons, and they might not be severe or chronic enough to warrant muscle relaxers or other pain relievers.
Muscle relaxers that are antispastics generally do not treat acute muscle pain. They are more often prescribed for muscle pain due to a medical condition, such as cerebral palsy, multiple sclerosis, or spinal cord injury. Antispasmodic muscle relaxers may be prescribed for acute, painful musculoskeletal pain/injury. For example, when you “throw out” your back and have limited mobility and severe spasming, an antispasmodic may be prescribed. This medicine will add to the effects of alcohol and other CNS depressants (medicines that slow down the nervous system, possibly causing drowsiness). Check with your doctor before taking any of the above while you are using baclofen.
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Though Flexeril has been deemed unharmful to an unborn baby, further research needs to be done as to whether Flexeril can pass through breast milk and harm a newborn. Baclofen should not be taken during pregnancy as it can cause birth defects. It is also unclear if Baclofen can pass through breast milk, so it is not recommended that you take either of these medications. After successful graduation from Boston University, MA, Sharon gained a Master’s degree in Public Health. Because of the similarities between the two drugs, there’s often a question of which one between Flexeril vs. Baclofen is stronger.