Baclofen Vs Soma- Similarities, Differentiation

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Baclofen is found under the brand name Gablofen and Lioresal and is used as a generic name for a class of drugs named antispastic and muscle relaxant. Moreover, it works by relaxing the muscles, thus used for muscle spasms and symptoms caused by multiple sclerosis, including stiffness, pain, and spasm.

Additionally, it is used in patients with injury or spinal cord disease symptoms. Recently, it has been used in high doses to treat alcohol dependence.

Soma belongs to a class of drugs used as a muscle relaxant and carries carisoprodol as its active ingredient. It is recommended as medication to treat muscle pain for the short term; however, it is worthwhile to use it for 14 to 21 days and not more than that.

The first medical approval of soma came into being in 2007. It performs its action by blocking pain sensation between nerves and the brain.

Differences between Baclofen and Soma

Baclofen is the doctor’s first choice to treat muscle spasticity caused by partial spinal cord injuries or multiple sclerosis. It has little or no effect on anxiety. Baclofen reaches its maximum plasma concentration within 2 to 3 hours of its ingestion. It is available as granules, tablets, and liquid solutions.

Soma, although not a doctor’s first choice and not preferable for long-term therapy, is still used as a short-term relaxant for muscle pain and muscle spasms. It is used in conjunction with physical therapy and rests on treating acute painful muscle and skeletal conditions. Compared to baclofen, soma reaches its maximum plasma concentration within 3 to 4 hours.

Pros of Baclofen vs Soma

The pros of baclofen are;

  • Work very quickly
  • Can cut or crush tablets
  • Available as a low-cost generic
  • Can consume with or without food

Pros of soma include;

  • Also, Work quickly
  • Can be cut or crushed in half 
  • Available as an affordable generic
  • Easy availability to buy soma online with a prescription.

Drug interaction

Baclofen negatively interacts with many drugs given as;

  • Benadryl (diphenhydramine)
  • Lyrica (pregabalin) 
  • Xanax (alprazolam)
  • Advil (ibuprofen)
  • Tylenol (acetaminophen)
  • Nexium (esomeprazole)
  • Ambien (zolpidem) 
  • Valium (diazepam)
  • Flexeril (cyclobenzaprine)
  • Cymbalta (duloxetine)
  • Norco (acetaminophen/hydrocodone)
  • Adderall (amphetamine/dextroamphetamine) and so on.

Soma is commonly known for interacting with the medication taken along with it. To this extent, it is preferable to inform your healthcare professional about other medications you are currently taking, most particularly;

  • Antifungal medicine, such as ketoconazole or voriconazole
  • A sedative: diazepam, alprazolam, or Valium;
  • Stomach acid reducers- omeprazole, lansoprazole, Nexium, or Prilosec;
  • Fluvoxamine
  • Rifampin;
  • Seizure medicine, such as carbamazepine or oxcarbazepine.

Side Effects of Baclofen vs. Soma

The common side effects that could arise due to the use of baclofen include;

  • Urinating more than usual
  • Drowsiness
  • Weakness
  • Constipation
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Sleeping problem (insomnia)
  • Feeling tired

Less common side effects include;

  • Confusion 
  • Hallucination
  • Seizures (convulsions)
  • Shallow breathing

Side effects of soma include;

Less common side effects include;

  • Feeling confused or agitated
  • Dizziness when standing up
  • Swelling of lips, tongue, and mouth
  • Poor coordination
  • Paralysis
  • Extreme weakness
  • Daze
  • New infections
  • Seizures
  • Redness of skin

Downside Baclofen

  1. Baclofen is not a recommended medicine except for muscle spasms caused by multiple sclerosis or brain injury.
  2. If you consume it too long, it needs more time to step out from the baclofen slowly.
  3. It is not as effective as it should be among a person who has previously experienced a stroke and is more likely to cause other side effects.

Soma has following downsides:

  1. Because of the dependence-causing and large abusal usage effect, soma is not sometimes a choice for doctors.
  2. The effectiveness of soma lowers after a short time period. That’s why it is recommended for the short term.
  3. It can cause withdrawal symptoms when stopped all of a sudden.

Contraindications for Baclofen vs Soma

It is mandatory to inform your doctor before starting baclofen as a medication if you, 

  • Have another seizures disorder or epilepsy
  • Use narcotic (opioid) medication
  • Have kidney disease
  • Have any previous history of blood clots or stroke

Likewise, inform your physician about the following before taking soma as a muscle relaxant;

  • Nephropathy
  • Liver disease
  • History of seizures

Precaution for Baclofen vs. Soma

  1. Avoid or limit drinking alcohol or alcoholic beverages while consuming baclofen or soma because alcohol increases the risk of serious side effects. Alcohol can trigger the nervous system side effects of baclofen and soma, such as drowsiness, dizziness, and difficulty concentrating. 
  2. Do not exceed beyond the recommended dose of soma or baclofen.
  3. Also, stay away from activities requiring mental alertness, like driving or using hazardous machinery.
  4. Discuss your concerns or issues with your doctor.

Conclusion

The difference between baclofen and soma is quite obvious now. Comparing the medicine which can work in a similar area of effect is like ignoring the doctor’s advice and deciding itself, which can cost the health. The medicine are prescribed as per the need of the hour or situation.

Within this frame of reference, using either baclofen or some during pregnancy is considered unsafe. That’s why it is advisable to consult your doctor or healthcare professional if you are pregnant. 

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