Methocarbamol for Back Pain

Robaxin for lower backpain
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Methocarbamol is a muscle relaxer drug. It is used as a medication to treat muscle pain and injury. It is sold under the brand name Robaxin, and it is an oral medication as well as injectables. It is mainly used in the short-term treatment of pain. Methocarbamol can be used for the treatment of back pain. It has been observed as an effective medicine for back pain as well as other musculoskeletal pain (Sibrack, J. and Hammer, R., 2020. Methocarbamol).

Metocarbamol-for-backpain

Study of effectiveness of Methocarbamol in Lower Back Pain

A study was conducted by Oliver M D Emrich et al. to observe whether Methocarbamol is effective for lower back pain or not.

The study was observed on participants suffering from lower back pain for at least 24 hours. The participants were categorized into 2 groups where 98 participants were given Methocarbamol while the other 104 were given a placebo for a span of 8 days. The treatment was stopped as soon as relief was observed for every individual.

It was observed that 44% of patients from the methocarbamol group got pain relief and thus pre-terminated the process, while it was 18 % in the placebo group.

A total of 67% of participants methocarbamol group and 35% of participants placebo group found the treatment effective as the pain was relieved and no major side effects were associated during the study.

Thus, this study shows that Methocarbamol is an effective medicine for lower back pain and can be used depending on medical conditions (Methocarbamol in acute low back pain. A randomized double-blind controlled study).

Methocarbamol for Back Pain
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How it works

Methocarbamol reduces pain by affecting the nerve impulses which travel to the brain. Methocarbamol decreases these nerve signals by blocking them and stopping them from reaching the brain. It also helps to slow down the activity of the CNS and promotes the muscles to relax, thus reducing the pain (Sibrack, J. and Hammer, R., 2020. Methocarbamol).

How to take Methocarbamol

One can take methocarbamol with or without meals. The medicine should be taken only as prescribed by the doctor. The amount of dosage can vary from person to person depending upon an individual’s tolerance and health conditions. The methocarbamol tablets should not be crushed or broken and taken as a whole. The methocarbamol injection should be taken into the muscle or infused into veins by a proper medical practitioner. One should consult the doctor before taking or stopping the medication from preventing severe side effects (Sibrack, J. and Hammer, R., 2020. Methocarbamol).

Forms and strengths

Methocarbamol is an oral medication. It is in the form of tablets and oral solutions. Methocarbamol can also be taken via injectable solutions- intramuscular or intravenous.

  • The strength of tablets is available in 500 and 700 mg.
  • The strength of the injectable solution of methocarbamol is 100 mg/ml.

Dosage

Adult dosage for muscle pain and back pain:

  • The initial daily dose is 1500 mg which can be taken 4 times a day, followed for 3-4 days.
  • The maintenance dose is 1000 mg per day, taken 4 times.

Adult dosage of injection:

  • The initial dose should be 1 g given intramuscularly or intravenously every 8 hours.
  • The maximum dose limit is 3 g per day.
  • Injections should not be administered for more than 3 days.

The doctor can change the dosage depending upon the tolerability and response to the treatment. Nausea, fainting, and sleepiness are some of the symptoms of overdosage of Methocarbamol. One should seek emergency medical help on observing such symptoms.

In case you miss the dose, take the dose immediately only if the next dose is after a long time. Taking two doses together to compensate for the missed dose will not help but increase the risk of adverse effects.

Who should not take Methocarbamol

Who-should-not-take-Methocarbamol

One should not take Methocarbamol if:

  • Seizures
  • Kidney problems
  • Below the age of 16
  • Allergic to methocarbamol
  • Liver diseases
  • Neuromuscular disease like Myasthenia Gravis
  • Consuming alcohol regularly
  • Pregnant women should not take Methocarbamol as it can harm the unborn baby.

Breastfeeding women can take Methocarbamol only after the doctor’s guidance. The doctor can prescribe methocarbamol to them only if necessary.

Side effects of Methocarbamol

These are some common side effects which one might experience after taking Methocarbamol:
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Difficulty in sleeping
  • Vomiting
  • Fever
But along with the common side effects, the following are some severe side effects that can be observed after consuming Methocarbamol:
  • Seizures
  • Difficulty in breathing
  • Change in heartbeats
  • Swelling
  • Rashes and itching
  • Blood clots
You should take medical help if you observe any of these symptoms. The doctor can change the dosage or terminate the medication depending upon the health condition (Sibrack, J. and Hammer, R., 2020. Methocarbamol).

Pros and Cons of Methocarbamol

Pros:

  • It can be used to treat Tetanus spasm also.
  • Effective medicine against muscle pain and spasms.
  • It can be used as a combination medication.

Cons:

  • If taken with alcohol, it can cause dizziness and make the person feel dizzier.
  • Not for use under the age of 16 for back pain.
  • Higher doses can create complications in people above 60.
  • Some severe side effects can trouble the individual (Sibrack, J. and Hammer, R., 2020. Methocarbamol).

Warnings

Methocarbamol can interact with the following drugs and medications:

  • OTC medicines
  • Herbal medicines and vitamins
  • Sleeping pills
  • Antidepressants such as Zoloft, Prozac, Imipramine, Valium
  • Other muscle pain reliever drugs

These interactions may harm health and suffer from adverse side effects. If you take any of these medications, it is essential to inform your doctor.

Is Methocarbamol addictive?

Methocarbamol is not addictive. Even though Methocarbamol works by affecting the central nervous system, it is not an addictive or narcotic drug. It can turn into an addictive substance when consumed with alcohol as it will make the person feel sleepier and loss of coordination.

Conclusion

Being a muscle relaxer, Methocarbamol is an effective medicine for back pain. It can be used to get relief from back pain after consulting the doctor. Before taking this medication, one should consult the doctor and take the doses as per the directions.