Why is this medication prescribed?
Baclofen acts on the spinal cord nerves and decreases the number and severity of muscle spasms caused by multiple sclerosis or spinal cord diseases. It also relieves pain and improves muscle movement.
This medication is sometimes prescribed for other uses; ask your doctor or pharmacist for more information.
How should this medicine be used?
Baclofen comes as a tablet to take by mouth. It usually is taken three times a day at evenly spaced intervals. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take baclofen exactly as directed. Do not take more or less of it or take it more often than prescribed by your doctor. This drug must be taken regularly for a few weeks before its full effect is felt.
Continue to take baclofen even if you feel well. Do not stop taking baclofen without talking to your doctor, especially if you have taken large doses for a long time. Your doctor probably will want to decrease your dose gradually.
What special precautions should I follow?
Before taking baclofen,
- tell your doctor and pharmacist if you are allergic to baclofen or any other drugs.
- tell your doctor and pharmacist what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking, especially muscle relaxants, sleeping pills, tranquilizers, and vitamins.
- tell your doctor if you have or have ever had kidney disease, epilepsy, ulcers, a stroke, a rheumatic disease, cerebral palsy, Parkinson's disease, or a psychiatric condition.
- tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding. If you become pregnant while taking baclofen, call your doctor immediately.
- you should know that this drug may make you drowsy. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how baclofen affects you.
- remember that alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this drug.
What should I do if I forget a dose?
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and continue your regular dosing schedule. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed one.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Baclofen may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- upset stomach
If you experience either of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- difficulty breathing
If you experience a serious side effect, you or your doctor may send a report to the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) MedWatch Adverse Event Reporting program online [at http://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch] or by phone [1-800-332-1088].
What should I know about storage and disposal of this medication?
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed. Talk to your pharmacist about the proper disposal of your medication.
In case of emergency/overdose
In case of overdose, call your local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. If the victim has collapsed or is not breathing, call local emergency services at 911.
What other information should I know?
Keep all appointments with your doctor.
Do not let anyone else take your medication. Ask your pharmacist any questions you have about refilling your prescription.
It is important for you to keep a written list of all of the prescription and nonprescription (over-the-counter) medicines you are taking, as well as any products such as vitamins, minerals, or other dietary supplements. You should bring this list with you each time you visit a doctor or if you are admitted to a hospital. It is also important information to carry with you in case of emergencies.
¶ This branded product is no longer on the market. Generic alternatives may be available.
Last Reviewed - 09/01/2010