This is topic gabepentin in forum Medical Questions at LymeNet Flash.

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Posted by HW88 (Member # 48309) on :
Anyone have experience with this drug? Is it addictive? Did it help with sleep? My insomnia is SUPER out of control and I'm pretty sure I would do a lot better if I got consistent sleep.

My sleep dr. suggested this.
Posted by Lymetoo (Member # 743) on :
It's not addictive, per se, but you would have to taper to come off of it.

It's hard on the heart and the brain, so do your research on that. There are some recent studies on it. I posted one in General Support a few months ago.

I do fine with Ambien, myself.

Gaba gave me too many side effects.
Posted by HW88 (Member # 48309) on :
My Dr. Won't prescribe Ambien while I'm still on klonopin. It has been a beast to get off of.
Posted by Bartenderbonnie (Member # 49177) on :
Garepentin has been a life-saver for me.
Strange thing is, it sat on my dresser for over a year because I would not take it.

2 years ago, before Lyme diagnosisis, my neurologist prescriped this drug for severe nerve pain. 300mg 3x a day. I lasted 3 days, side effects turned me into unproductive zombie, swore I would never touch this drug again.

New primary doc prescriped the same Garepentin but at 100mg 3x a day. I started slow, 1 at night. Put me right to sleep. I was also sufferring from IC bladder pain at the time. When I got up in the morning, I urinated for 5 minutes. Bladder was very full but very relaxed. Noticeable improvements in 1 day.

I now can take 1 100 mg during the day for pain and not feel dowsy. I continue to take 1 100mg at night to relax and sleep.

So to recap;

It helped my nerves, tremors, and muscle spasms.
It helped my IC bladder pain.
It helped me relax and get a good night's sleep.
It helped my pain level decrease.
And it didn't turn me into a zombie.

P.S. Lyrica was thrown in the garbage.
Cymbalta was thrown in the garbage.
Buspar was thrown in the garbage.
Posted by HW88 (Member # 48309) on :
Thank you BB. I'm mostly needing it for sleep, so I hope it helps, but my insomnia is pretty severe.

Here's hoping to a good night sleep.
Posted by HW88 (Member # 48309) on :
Do you build a tolerance? Does it still make you sleepy?

Are there withdrawal symptoms?
Posted by Keebler (Member # 12673) on :
First and foremost, this is an anti-seizure drug. I don't think it should be taken for any other reason but the "after market" (after thought, I call it) uses make them a lot of money.

Still, even if it calms pain signals, it does nothing to address the cause and someone might be on it for life rather than address the cause of pain or sleeplessness. Work on the cause, support rather than numb down the brain signals, please.

It might be of help short term or in cases of nerve damage, longer. I tried 3 or 4 times and could never tolerate it. So I was not on long enough for dependency. I have read / heard that this can be a rough ride to wean off, though. And that says a lot about the risks.

And, for those with lyme or toxicity caused seizures, at least for me this was disaster. It did zero to address the cause of seizures in my case.

Even a tiny dose made me incredibly sleepy, my legs turned to Jell-O and I fell many times while trying to make this work.

I took this to try to lessen seizures but it caused MORE seizures for me. How, my doctor asked in disbelief.

It took me years, looking back and reading about breakthrough seizures to figure out what might have happened but basically as it made me so very sleepy all the time, even if only a low dose at night

- my brain kept trying harder and harder to wake me up daytime and I'd have spikes in brain activity that triggered seizures more for my tender brain.

As for why it impaired my muscles, it just shut them down. My brain seemed unable to tell my legs to hold me up.

And, turns out it affects the vestibular / balance system in the inner/ middle ear. That also is why it made me so dizzy and off kilter.

I could never "wake up" - and all this on a very tiny dose. I would never recommend this to anyone. It can also amplify depression to dangerous levels. I'm surprised I survived that.

There are safer ways, I do think. I sure found better ways.

While most sleep drugs can really harm the liver, neuroton / gabapentin can stress the kidneys. We need to have things that are kind to both liver and kidneys.
Posted by Bartenderbonnie (Member # 49177) on :
I tolerate it at lower doses.

I've been taking it since Oct '17 at 100mg 1x day and it still does the trick. On bad days, 2x a day.

Old Neuro wanted 900mg per day.
New Neuro wants the same dose.
Both stated what a great med this is at high doses, up to 1800 mg per day ! And how it's not really an abused drug and very few overdoses are reported.

My new primary listened to my concerns, prescriped 100mg dose. I like the lower dose and can control whether I need more. 1 100mg at night will usually make me get a good night sleep. It relaxes your whole body. I experience no side effects.
Posted by HW88 (Member # 48309) on :
Keener, I really appreciate your thoughts. Thank you. I know most drugs are really not great, but sometimes I have to use what works to keep myself ok.

BB, have you had insomnia issues? I guess what I'm asking is after taking it for as long as you have --does it still make you sleepy or does it just help once you are asleep. My issue is mostly sleep onset, so need help with the getting sleepy part.
Posted by Bartenderbonnie (Member # 49177) on :

It sounds like you are really struggling with severe insomnia.
I do not have this issue. . . But I did before treatment and during treatment last year. I feel for you. Horrible not being able to sleep.

My old primary doc, the one that told me I didn't have Lyme, told me to learn to live with my symptoms, referred me to a Psychiatrist, gave me a script for Xanax .25mg to get rid of me.

Xanax bought me time till I got a LLMD. I used this med for anxiety but also for nightly insomnia.

I still have issues with calming my body down to get to sleep.
But I find Garepentin helps with pain AND sleep. But I would not have survived my early stages of illness without the Xanax. Even though these 2 meds are not prescriped for sleep, per say, both meds serve their purpose for sleep respectfully.

Come on girl, let's get you a much needed good nights sleep

P.S. Threw Ambien in the garbage too. .
Posted by HW88 (Member # 48309) on :
Well, it worked for 1 night. Last night it didn't put me to sleep, just made me dizzy and agitated... grr.

I go back to see my LLMD on the 21st. Maybe he will have suggestions.
Posted by Keebler (Member # 12673) on :

Posted by HW88 (Member # 48309) on :
I have read through the thread several times Keebler. I've tried most of the suggestion there.

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