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Written by: Editorial Staff.

What is Lyrica?

Lyrica is the brand name of pregabalin, an anticonvulsant and anti-seizure medication that is used to treat both neuropathic pain and partial seizures that are caused by temporal lobe epilepsy.

What is Lyrica Used For?

Lyrica is approved to treat a number of afflictions and pains in the United States. Lyrica is commonly used to treat the following afflictions:

  • Epilepsy
  • Diabetic neuropathy pain
  • Post-herpetic neuralgia (pain following the shingles virus)
  • Fibromyalgia, which causes pain in muscles and connective tissues as well as widespread pain. This also causes heightened and painful responses to touch.

Side Effects of Lyrica

Side Effects of Lyrica

The side effects of Lyrica range from moderate to severe, and their frequency varies as well. As with most side effects, if they become increasingly intense, anyone taking this drug should immediately contact a doctor.

Common side effects of Lyrica include:

  • Dizziness and/or drowsiness
  • Problems with visual perceptions
  • Disordered or slurred speech
  • Tremor
  • Lethargy
  • Memory problems
  • Euphoria
  • Constipation
  • Dry mouth
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Weight gain

Less common but more serious side effects of Lyrica include:

  • Depression
  • Confusion
  • Agitation
  • Hallucinations
  • Kidney stones

Does Lyrica Cause Depression?

According to research, it is evident that 1 in 500 people are attracted to suicidal thoughts or actions if they keep using Lyrica. Thus you must call your doctor immediately if you have:

  • Experience more sadness
  • Severe anxiety
  • Increased irritability
  • Confusion
  • Increased aggressive behavior
  • Panic attacks
  • Restlessness
  • Acted on negative emotions
  • Thoughts of suicide or death
  • Attempted suicide

Is Lyrica Addictive?

Lyrica is classified by the FDA as a controlled substance because drug users identified this drug as giving them a high, and people who were given this drug over a long period of time and were suddenly taken off experienced symptoms of withdrawals.

Although the addiction potential for Lyrica is low, and it is considered a Schedule V controlled substance, it is still important that those who are prescribed pregabalin recognize the symptoms of withdrawal from this drug.

Symptoms of Lyrica Withdrawal

The symptoms of withdrawing from Lyrica are similar to symptoms of withdrawal from benzodiazepines and other classified drugs. These symptoms include:

  • Seizures
  • Insomnia
  • Nausea
  • Headaches
  • Diarrhea

For those who suddenly stop a Lyrica regimen and begin to experience these symptoms, it is important to contact your healthcare professional as soon as possible.

Lyrica Overdose

Although it is not considered possible to overdose on Lyrica fatally, it is still possible to cause damage to one’s body and mind by taking more Lyrica than is prescribed or necessary. The symptoms of overdosing on Lyrica include:

  • Excessive mood changes
  • Drowsiness
  • Increased confusion
  • Depression
  • Agitation
  • Restlessness

Treatment For An Overdose On Lyrica

There is no specific antidote for the treatment of a Lyrica overdose. Sometimes, medical staff will induce emesis in order to rid the patient of the unabsorbed drug, and they will usually be placed in general supportive care in order to monitor vitals and other important signs. If there are any signs that you or a loved one has overdosed on Lyrica, contact healthcare professionals or a hospital immediately.

Medications Similar to Lyrica

As Lyrica pregabalin is a gabapentinoid, it is similar to gabapentin and other gabapentinoids. One such drug is the brand Neurontin. However, these drugs are not interchangeable, and as with any drug, consulting with your doctor before switching medications is necessary in order to ensure safety and proper dosage.