Why is Neurontin prescribed?
Neurontin has two uses. First, it may be prescribed with other
medications to treat partial seizures (the type in which symptoms are
limited). It can be used whether or not the seizures eventually become
general and result in loss of consciousness.
Second, it can be used to relieve the burning nerve pain that
sometimes persists for months or even years after an attack of shingles
Most important fact about Neurontin
Take Neurontin exactly as directed by your doctor. To effectively
control your seizures, it is important that you take Neurontin 3 times
a day, approximately every 8 hours. You should not go longer than 12
hours without a dose of medication.
How should you take Neurontin?
Do not increase or decrease dosage of this medication without your
doctor's approval; and do not suddenly stop taking it, as this may
cause an increase in the frequency of your seizures. If you are taking
an antacid, take Neurontin at least 2 hours after the antacid.
You may take Neurontin with or without food.
If you miss a dose...
Try not to allow more than 12 hours to pass between doses. Do not double doses.
Store capsules and tablets at room temperature. Keep the oral solution refrigerated.
What side effects may occur?
Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in
intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can
determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Neurontin.
When taken for epilepsy, more common side effects may include:
Blurred, dimmed, or double vision, bronchitis (in children),
dizziness, drowsiness, fatigue, fever (in children), involuntary eye
movement, itchy, runny nose, lack of muscular coordination, nausea,
tremor, viral infection (in children), vomiting, weight increase (in
When taken for nerve pain, more common side effects may include:
Accidental injury, constipation, diarrhea, dizziness, drowsiness,
dry mouth, headache, infection, lack of muscular coordination, nausea,
swelling in arms and legs, vomiting, weakness
A wide variety of uncommon and rare side effects have also been
reported. If you develop any new or unusual symptoms while taking
Neurontin, be sure to let your doctor know.
Why should Neurontin not be prescribed?
You should not take Neurontin if you have ever had an allergic reaction to it.
Special warnings about Neurontin
Neurontin causes some people to become drowsy and less alert.
Combining it with morphine makes this more likely. Do not drive or
operate dangerous machinery or participate in any hazardous activity
that requires full mental alertness until you are certain Neurontin
does not have this effect on you.
In children, Neurontin occasionally triggers behavioral problems
such as unstable emotions, hostility, aggression, hyperactivity, and
lack of concentration. However, such problems (if they occur) are
Be sure to tell your doctor if you have any kidney problems or are
on hemodialysis, as your doctor will need to adjust your dosage of
Tell your doctor about any medications you are taking, including over-the-counter drugs.
Possible food and drug interactions when taking Neurontin
If Neurontin is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of
either can be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially
important to check with your doctor before combining Neurontin with the
Special information if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
The effects of Neurontin on pregnant women have not been adequately
studied, although birth defects have occurred in babies whose mothers
took an antiepileptic medication while they were pregnant. The drug
should be used during pregnancy only if clearly needed. If you are
pregnant or plan to become pregnant, tell your doctor immediately. This
medication may appear in breast milk and could affect a nursing infant.
It should be used by mothers who nurse their babies only if its
benefits clearly outweigh the risks.
Recommended dosage for Neurontin
Adults and Children 12 Years and Over
The recommended starting dose is 300 milligrams three times a day.
After that, the usual daily dosage ranges from 900 to 1,800 milligrams
divided into 3 doses.
Children 3 to 12 Years of Age
Daily dosage is calculated according to the child's weight. The
usual starting dosage is 10 to 15 milligrams per 2.2 pounds. Dosage is
then increased over a period of three days to 40 milligrams per 2.2
pounds for children aged 3 and 4, and 25 to 35 milligrams per 2.2
pounds for children aged 5 and over. The total daily dosage is taken as
3 smaller doses throughout the day.
PAIN FOLLOWING A SHINGLES ATTACK
Treatment typically starts with a single 300-milligram dose on the
first day, two 300-milligram doses on the second day, and three
300-milligram doses on the third day. If necessary, the doctor may
increase the daily total to as much as 1,800 milligrams, divided into
three doses., Whether you are taking Neurontin for epilepsy or pain,
the doctor will lower the dose if you have poor kidney function. Also,
if Neurontin is discontinued or another drug is added to therapy, your
doctor will do this gradually, over a 1-week period.
Any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. If you suspect an overdose, seek medical treatment immediately.
Symptoms of Neurontin overdose may include:
Diarrhea, double vision, drowsiness, lethargy, slurred speech