Author: Alex Thompson

How to Stop Taking Gabapentin: 6 Simple Steps to Safely Wean Off

how to stop taking gabapentin 300mg

Among the documented cases, gabapentin withdrawal began between 12 hours and 7 days after the last dose. It is rare to experience withdrawal symptoms from gabapentin, but it does happen. A review of medical journals published between 1993, when gabapentin was approved, and 2015 found 18 case reports of gabapentin addiction, dependence, or withdrawal.

how to stop taking gabapentin 300mg

Your brain cells (neurons) become dependent on a high dose of the drug for normal functioning. When the drug is stopped, your brain becomes temporarily disorganized. If you start to feel that you need more of the drug to function, stopping suddenly is more likely to lead to withdrawal symptoms. Higher doses, physical dependence, and a history of substance problems pose more risk for abuse.

How to Safely Stop Taking Gabapentin (Neurontin)

Taking antiepileptic drugs like gabapentin can increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior. Contact your healthcare provider immediately if you notice emerging or worsening depression or unusual changes in mood or behavior after starting treatment. Gabapentin is a prescription medication approved to treat certain types of seizures and nerve pain that follows a herpes infection (postherpetic neuralgia). The best way to avoid gabapentin withdrawal is to only take the drug in the dose prescribed by your doctor for its approved uses.

Gabapentin is sometimes included for pain control before or after surgery to reduce the doses and side effects of opioids like morphine. One recent study found people used fewer opioids and recovered faster when taking gabapentin after surgery. These are all important reasons to consider stopping gabapentin.

Talk to your healthcare provider if you don’t have pain relief within a couple of weeks after starting treatment. While it may sound odd, the best treatment for severe gabapentin withdrawal symptoms is gabapentin. Resuming your normal dose of gabapentin will get rid of potentially dangerous symptoms, like delirium. It appears as though gabapentin dependence and withdrawal are most common among people who use at least one other substance, such as opioids or alcohol. In the case reports, all patients had past drug or alcohol addiction issues.

  1. After taking a dose, IR gabapentin starts to work in the body within two to three hours.
  2. If you are pregnant, gabapentin can have unpredictable effects.
  3. It’s also possible that we may see more cases of gabapentin withdrawal in the future because, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), gabapentin use is on the rise.

Studies that are available mainly have focused on the withdrawal schedule for the use of seizures also. In our latest question and answer, we discuss how to safely stop taking gabapentin, by slowly lowering your dose to prevent withdrawal. By Corinne O’Keefe OsbornCorinne Osborn is an award-winning health and wellness journalist with a background in substance abuse, sexual health, and psychology. In a small survey of prescription drug abusers in Appalachian Kentucky, 15% reported using gabapentin to get high.

How To Taper Gabapentin

If you’ve been taking gabapentin, you and your doctor can discuss whether the medication works. This might include a conversation about reducing or stopping the medication for several reasons. Studies show an increase in the number of overall prescriptions of gabapentin.

If you want to stop taking your medication, do it under a doctor’s supervision while gradually decreasing your dosage. Gabapentin enacarbil (Horizant) is approved for restless leg syndrome and postherpetic neuralgia. Off-label prescribing is when a doctor prescribes a medication for a different use than its approval by the Food and Drug Administration. You might have a serious reaction like seizures if you stop suddenly. Other studies however, conclude that some individuals (such as those with seizure disorders) may need to be tapered over weeks or months to be safe.

how to stop taking gabapentin 300mg

Harmful effects can also include problems with breathing and mental status changes. Risk of death with co-use of opioids and gabapentin is up to 60 percent greater with doses of gabapentin over 900 milligrams per day. Yes, the neurologist did a complete neurological exam but she couldn’t find anything wrong with me aside from my numb toes. They’re numb since April after one month my job forced me to stay on my feet all day long. Not being used to staying on my feet so long, I guess I pinched the nerves of my toes. But now not having health insurance the neurologist wouldn’t want to see me without paying her, even if it’s just a fast consultation.

Related medical questions

If you experience seizures, shortness of breath, or other serious symptoms, call 911 or seek medical attention immediately. Your doctor will develop a plan to slowly take you off the medication. This could be lowering the dose over a week or over several weeks. Don’t stop taking gabapentin without first discussing it with your doctor.

Cocaine users have reported the same, as well as attempts to use gabapentin to help alleviate cocaine withdrawal. Alcohol may worsen the side effects of gabapentin such as drowsiness and dizziness. There are certain risks for someone who stops taking gabapentin. The easiest way to lookup drug information, identify pills, check interactions and set up your own personal medication records. If your medication costs are too high, ask your pharmacist or doctor about other medication choices. If your symptoms haven’t improved or you’re feeling worse, ask your doctor about other options to treat your condition.

In clinical trials, doses up to 3600 milligrams per day have also been used. The time that it takes for a person to taper off the drug may depend on the dose of gabapentin and whether any symptoms develop as they decrease the dose. provides accurate and independent information on more than 24,000 prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines and natural products. This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Data sources include Micromedex (updated 3 Mar 2024), Cerner Multum™ (updated 4 Mar 2024), ASHP (updated 10 Mar 2024) and others.

How long it takes you to stop the medication is completely up to you and your doctor. Stopping gabapentin is an individual process, and there’s no exact timeline. Central nervous system (CNS) depressants like alcohol and opioids taken together with gabapentin can increase drowsiness and dizziness.