What is the Advantages and Disadvantages of Taking Flexeril ?

1. Advantages

  • Relieves muscle spasms associated with acute, painful, musculoskeletal conditions.
  • Improves pain, tenderness, and range of motion associated with muscle spasms and increases a person’s ability to perform their day-to-day activities.
  • Cyclobenzaprine is the most studied skeletal muscle relaxant.
  • Relieves skeletal muscle spasm without interfering with muscle function.
  • The sedative effects of cyclobenzaprine may help those experiencing insomnia as a result of muscle spasms.
  • Long-lasting effects.
  • Cyclobenzaprine has not been associated with addiction; however, abrupt discontinuation may produce symptoms such as nausea, headache, and a general feeling of discomfort. The dosage of cyclobenzaprine is best tapered off slowly on discontinuation.
  • Generic cyclobenzaprine is available.

2. Disadvantages

If you are between the ages of 18 and 60, take no other medication or have no other medical conditions, side effects you are more likely to experience include:

  • Sedation. This is a major side effect and it may impair reaction skills and affect a person’s ability to drive or operate machinery. Avoid alcohol
  • Other common side effects include dry mouth, fatigue, difficulty with urination, an increase in eye pressure, headache, dizziness, blurred vision, or nausea
  • Should only be used short-term (for periods of up to two to three weeks only)
  • Not effective for muscle spasms occurring as a result of cerebral or spinal cord disease, or in children with cerebral palsy
  • Cyclobenzaprine should never be given within 14 days of monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitor antidepressants, as the combination may be fatal
  • Interaction with other drugs that also increase serotonin (such as antidepressants, tramadol, St John’s Wort, bupropion) may cause serotonin syndrome. Symptoms include mental status changes (such as agitation, hallucinations, coma, delirium), fast heart rate, dizziness, flushing, muscle tremor or rigidity, and stomach symptoms (including nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea)
  • Cyclobenzaprine may enhance the effects or side effects of tricyclic antidepressants (for example, amitriptyline and imipramine), alcohol, and other CNS depressants
  • May not be suitable for people with arrhythmias, heart block or conduction disturbances, heart failure, hyperthyroidism, or immediately following a heart attack
  • The dosage of cyclobenzaprine should be reduced in people with mild liver disease. It should not be taken by people with moderate-to-severe liver disease
  • Cyclobenzaprine may not be suitable for people with glaucoma or increased intraocular pressure, a history of urinary retention, or taking other drugs that also have anticholinergic side effects (anticholinergic side effects include constipation, blurred vision, and increase in eye pressure).
  • Ineffective for muscle spasms due to brain injury or disease.
  • Elderly people may be more sensitive to the effects of cyclobenzaprine, and the dosage should be kept low if the benefits of using it in seniors outweigh the risks.