CDHB

Gabapentin

gab-ah-pen-tin

What does it do?

Gabapentin is used to treat and prevent some types of pain and seizures.

How should you take it?

Take gabapentin regularly as directed with a glass of water.

What if you forget a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as possible and continue as directed.

Can you take other medicines?

Some medicines available without a prescription may react with gabapentin including:

  • anti-sickness medicines (e.g. Sea-legs®)
  • some antihistamines (may be in anti-allergy, anti-nausea and cough/cold medicines)

Tell your pharmacist or doctor about all medicines or treatments that you may be taking, including vitamins, herbal products (e.g. ginkgo) or recreational drugs (e.g. ecstasy).

What side effects might you notice?

Side EffectsRecommended action

Skin rash, skin peeling or blisters

Stop taking and see your doctor immediately

Suicidal thoughts

Swollen lips, tongue, throat or face

Tell your doctor immediately

Changes in vision

Confusion, loss of co-ordination/walking or handwriting problems, memory loss, mood changes, tremor, trouble concentrating

Tell your doctor

Dizziness, drowsiness, headache

Tiredness or weakness, muscle aches and pains

Swollen feet or legs

Change of appetite, weight gain, dry mouth

Impotence

Tell your doctor if troublesome

Stomach upset

Take with food

If you notice any other effects, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Other information:

  • Tell your doctor if you have kidney problems.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.
  • Gabapentin can impair your ability to do tasks such as driving or using machines. Alcohol makes this worse. Discuss your risk with your health professional. (search NZTA - Are you safe to drive?)
  • Do not stop taking gabapentin without talking to your doctor first, unless you have a skin rash (see Side Effects).