Gabapentin Side Effects

Drowsiness, dizziness, loss of coordination, tiredness, blurred/double vision, unusual eye movements, or shaking (tremor) may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

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PFZ05130Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

Tell your doctor right away if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: swelling of the hands/ankles/feet, signs of infection (such as fever, cough, persistent sore throat).

A small number of people who take anticonvulsants for any condition (such as seizures, bipolar disorder, pain) may experience depression, suicidal thoughts/attempts, or other mental/mood problems. Tell your doctor immediately if you or your family/caregiver notice any unusual/sudden changes in your mood, thoughts, or behavior including signs of depression, suicidal thoughts/attempts, thoughts about harming yourself.

Get medical help right away if you have any serious side effects, including: unusual fever, swollen glands, yellowing skin/eyes, unusual tiredness, dark urine, change in the amount of urine, chest pain.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US –

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada – Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.


If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe drowsiness, slurred speech, weakness.


Do not share this medication with others.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up. If you take gabapentin 3 times a day to control seizures, do not let…

Gabapentin Side Effects

Gabapentin Side Effects
Gabapentin Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  1. Clumsiness or unsteadiness
  2. continuous, uncontrolled, back-and-forth, or rolling eye movements

More common in children

  1. Aggressive behavior or other behavior problems
  2. anxiety
  3. concentration problems and change in school performance
  4. crying
  5. depression
  6. false sense of well-being
  7. hyperactivity or increase in body movements
  8. rapidly changing moods
  9. reacting too quickly, too emotional, or overreacting
  10. restlessness
  11. suspiciousness or distrust

Less common

  1. Black, tarry stools
  2. chest pain
  3. chills
  4. cough
  5. depression, irritability, or other mood or mental changes
  6. fever
  7. loss of memory
  8. pain or swelling in the arms or legs
  9. painful or difficult urination
  10. shortness of breath
  11. sore throat
  12. sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
  13. swollen glands
  14. unusual bleeding or bruising
  15. unusual tiredness or weakness

Incidence not known

  1. Abdominal or stomach pain
  2. blistering, peeling, or loosening of the skin
  3. clay-colored stools
  4. coma
  5. confusion
  6. convulsions
  7. dark urine
  8. decreased urine output
  9. diarrhea
  10. dizziness
  11. fast or irregular heartbeat
  12. headache
  13. increased thirst
  14. itching or skin rash
  15. joint pain
  16. large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  17. loss of appetite
  18. muscle ache or pain
  19. nausea
  20. red skin lesions, often with a purple center
  21. red, irritated eyes
  22. unpleasant breath odor
  23. vomiting of blood
  24. yellow eyes or skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  1. Blurred vision
  2. cold or flu-like symptoms
  3. delusions
  4. dementia
  5. hoarseness
  6. lack or loss of strength
  7. lower back or side pain
  8. swelling of the hands, feet, or lower legs
  9. trembling or shaking

Less common or rare

  1. Accidental injury
  2. appetite increased
  3. back pain
  4. bloated or full feeling
  5. body aches or pain
  6. burning, dry, or itching eyes
  7. change in vision
  8. change in walking and balance
  9. clumsiness or unsteadiness
  10. congestion
  11. constipation
  12. cough producing mucus
  13. decrease in sexual desire or ability
  14. difficulty with breathing
  15. dryness of the mouth or throat
  16. earache
  17. excess air or gas in the stomach or intestines
  18. excessive tearing
  19. eye discharge
  20. feeling faint, dizzy, or lightheadedness
  21. feeling of warmth or heat
  22. flushed, dry skin
  23. flushing or redness of the skin, especially on the face and neck
  24. frequent urination
  25. fruit-like breath odor
  26. impaired vision
  27. incoordination
  28. increased hunger
  29. increased sensitivity to pain
  30. increased sensitivity to touch
  31. increased thirst
  32. indigestion
  33. noise in the ears
  34. pain, redness, rash, swelling, or bleeding where the skin is rubbed off
  35. passing gas
  36. redness or swelling in the ear
  37. redness, pain, swelling of the eye, eyelid, or inner lining of the eyelid
  38. runny nose
  39. sneezing
  40. sweating
  41. tender, swollen glands in the neck
  42. tightness in the chest
  43. tingling in the hands and feet
  44. trouble sleeping
  45. trouble swallowing
  46. trouble thinking
  47. twitching
  48. unexplained weight loss
  49. voice changes
  50. vomiting
  51. weakness or loss of strength
  52. weight gain

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Dangerous Gabapentin Drug Interactions

Gabapentin, a versatile medication with diverse applications, can interact with various substances, potentially leading to adverse effects. It is crucial for individuals using gabapentin to be aware of these interactions to ensure the safety and efficacy of their treatment. It is imperative for healthcare professionals and patients alike to thoroughly discuss and understand these potential gabapentin interactions to navigate treatment regimens safely.

Below are common gabapentin interactions and their associated effects:

  • Losartan (angiotensin II receptor blocker): The combination of gabapentin and losartan may increase the risk of dizziness and drowsiness.
  • Ethacrynic acid (diuretic): Gabapentin may decrease the effectiveness of ethacrynic acid.
  • Caffeine: High doses of caffeine may increase the side effects of gabapentin, such as dizziness and drowsiness.
  • Phenytoin (anticonvulsant): Gabapentin may increase the concentration of phenytoin, potentially leading to toxicity.
  • Mefloquine (antimalarial): Mefloquine may increase the risk of seizures when combined with gabapentin.
  • Magnesium oxide (mineral supplement): Taking magnesium oxide with gabapentin may reduce the absorption of gabapentin.
  • Cimetidine (histamine H2 receptor antagonist): Cimetidine may increase the concentration of gabapentin in the blood.
  • Naproxen (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug – NSAID): NSAIDs, including naproxen, may increase the risk of certain side effects when taken with gabapentin.
  • Sevelamer (phosphate binder): Gabapentin may decrease the absorption of sevelamer, potentially reducing its effectiveness.
  • Painkillers (opioids): Combining gabapentin with opioids may increase the risk of central nervous system depression, leading to respiratory distress, enhanced sedation, and greater potential for abuse.
  • Antidepressants: The combination of gabapentin with certain antidepressants may increase the risk of serotonin syndrome, a potentially life-threatening condition.
  • Antipsychotic medications: Combining gabapentin with antipsychotic medications may increase the risk of dizziness, drowsiness, and impaired concentration.

You should disclose all of the medications you take to your healthcare provider, including over-the-counter medications, supplements, and herbal products. Based on your medical history and unique situation, they can offer tailored advice. Never change your medication schedule without first talking to a healthcare provider.

Gabapentin Interactions With Alcohol

In addition to avoiding certain drugs, individuals who take gabapentin should also avoid drinking during treatment. A gabapentin and alcohol interaction can have dangerous side effects, which is why it’s generally discouraged to drink while taking the medication. Both substances act as central nervous system depressants, and together, they can increase an individual’s risk of sedation, dizziness, and impaired cognitive function.

Below are some additional side effects of gabapentin and alcohol to consider:

  • Increased central nervous system depression: Alcohol and gabapentin have the potential to sedate the central nervous system. When combined, they might have a synergistic or additive effect that makes you feel more sleepy and impaired.
  • Cognitive impairment: These two substances together may affect cognitive function, such as coordination and focus. This may make falls and accidents more likely.
  • Dizziness and drowsiness: Drinking while on gabapentin can make people drowsy and dizzy, as both medications can produce these effects individually.
  • Increased risk of overdose: Alcohol and gabapentin together may make respiratory depression more likely. This is especially dangerous for people who have heart or breathing problems.
  • Gastrointestinal side effects: Combining the two substances may increase the risk of gastrointestinal adverse effects like nausea and vomiting.

Everyone responds differently to medication, and alcohol and the degree of interaction can be influenced by a variety of factors, including the dosage of gabapentin, the quantity of alcohol consumed, and individual health conditions.

It’s important to speak with your doctor before taking gabapentin with alcohol or altering any other aspect of your medication schedule. They can help you understand the possible risks and benefits and offer tailored advice based on your medical history. You should also always be honest about any worries you may have about alcohol consumption with your healthcare professional to receive advice and assistance.

Can I Take Any Pain Meds With Gabapentin?

Generally, no, you cannot take pain medications with gabapentin. However, this depends on the regimen created by your healthcare provider. Unless directed to by your doctor, you should not mix painkillers like opioids with gabapentin, as this may increase the risk of adverse effects like central nervous system depression, leading to drowsiness, dizziness, and impaired cognitive function.

Additionally, if you are consulting with a doctor about taking gabapentin, be sure to tell them about any medications you’re currently taking. This allows them to either provide you with a safe dose or avoid prescribing a medication that could have potentially dangerous interactions.

Can I Take Gabapentin With Ibuprofen?

Combining gabapentin and ibuprofen may be done under the guidance of a medical professional but should not be done otherwise. It’s important to consult with your doctor before taking ibuprofen with gabapentin, as both medications can impact the central nervous system as well as the gastrointestinal system. Some possible side effects to consider can include drowsiness, dizziness, stomach irritation and bleeding, impaired kidney function, and liver problems.

As previously mentioned, it’s important to take prescription drugs exactly as directed by your doctor and to let them know about all of the medications you take, including over-the-counter medications, herbal products, and supplements. This enables your healthcare provider to decide on your treatment plan with knowledge, minimizing risks and accounting for possible interactions.

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