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What is LYRICA®?

Stomach discomfort may be a side effect of Lyrica.
Easier-than-normal bruising is one side effect of LYRICA.
Blurred vision is among the side effects of LYRICA.
Article Details
  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 12 September 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2014
    Conjecture Corporation
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LYRICA®, which is called pregabalin in its generic form, is an anti-epileptic medication. It is used to control seizure activity. It may also be prescribed for the treatment of fibromyalgia. In some cases, it is even prescribed for the treatment of pain caused by such problems as herpes zoster and diabetic nerve damage.

LYRICA® decreases the speed of brain impulses, which are responsible for seizure activity. It can also work to alter chemical substances in a person's brain, which transmit signals of pain though a person's nervous system. It must be taken with a full glass of water, but it may be taken with or without food. It is important to take this medication exactly as a doctor prescribes it, without altering the dose or frequency in any way.

Sometimes people begin to feel better when they're taking LYRICA®, and they may want to stop using it to prevent seizures. However, doing so may cause seizure activity to increase. Also, a person may experience withdrawal symptoms upon discontinuing this medication, especially if it has been in use for a significant amount of time; withdrawal symptoms can include such things as sleep difficulty, headaches and diarrhea. If a person wishes to discontinue taking this medication, it is best to do so under a doctor's supervision. It many be necessary to wean off the medication slowly to avoid uncomfortable effects.

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There are some things that should be avoided while a person is taking LYRICA®. It is important to avoid alcoholic beverages, which can intensify medication side effects. Any medication or substance that alters a person's ability to stay alert may also impair his ability to think clearly and react quickly while taking this medication. For this reason, it is smart to consult a doctor before taking such things as medications for colds and allergies, pain relievers that contain narcotic medications, muscle relaxers, and sleeping pills. It is wise to notify a doctor before taking other medications for seizure activity as well as those prescribed for depression and anxiety.

LYRICA® can cause a range of side effects. Among the less serious are such things as dizziness, anxiety, and drowsiness. A person may also experience blurred vision, loss of coordination, and difficulty remembering things or concentrating. Dry mouth, rashes, itching, constipation, increased appetite, stomach discomfort, and joint or muscle pain are also among the potential side effects of this drug.

Some side effects of LYRICA® are far more serious, requiring a person to contact a doctor, and they include such things as difficulty breathing and swelling in the facial region and throat. A person should also call his or her doctor immediately upon experiencing such worrisome side effects as disruption in mood and behavior, depression or anxiety, hostility, hyperactivity, and suicidal thoughts. Muscle discomfort, weakness, fever, easier-than-normal bruising and bleeding, rapid weight gain, and swelling of the extremities are also cause for seeking immediate medical attention.

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