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The medication carisoprodol is typically used for relieving muscle spasms and pain that can result from several medical conditions. The carisoprodol dose that a patient takes can be affected by many factors, including body weight, tolerance, severity of symptoms, and other health conditions. Doctors generally take all of these variables into account before prescribing a dose of this medication.
A normal carisoprodol dose for muscle pain is usually one 250 milligram (mg) or 350 mg tablet to be taken at bedtime. For more substantial pain, the 250 mg or 350 mg dosage can be taken up to three times a day, with an additional bedtime dose. Due to its sedating effects and interactions with other medications, patients may have to work up to dosing several times a day, especially if they are taking other medicines that cause drowsiness. Children under 12 years old may take the same doses used for adults, as long as it is under a doctor's orders.
The manufacturers of this medication recommend that adults and teenagers do not exceed a carisoprodol dose of more than 1,400 mg a day. Some formulations of carisoprodol include other medications, such as codeine and acetaminophen. When combined with other medications, the maximum dosage of this medication recommended by the manufacturers is 1,600 mg per day.
Certain health conditions can impact the carisoprodol dose that a person should take. The liver metabolizes this drug, so individuals with liver damage should take lower, less frequent doses so that it does not accumulate in this organ. Patients that have lower levels of some liver enzymes should also take lower dosages of this medication, due to the same risk of accumulation. Kidney damage also calls for lower and less frequent dosing, because the kidneys normally excrete carisoprodol. Taking a normal dosage of this medication could thus lead to unsafe accumulations in the kidneys if they have been damaged.
Even when taken exactly as directed, tolerance can form to this drug. For this reason, doctors will sometimes increase a person's carisoprodol dose for short periods of time. This higher dose is usually only intended as a temporary solution, since carisoprodol is not meant to be taken for long periods of time, since it carries a risk of psychological and physical dependence. Usually, this medication is only used for two or three weeks at a time, even at lower daily doses, so that tolerance and dependence do not develop.