What is Flexeril?
Flexeril is a muscle relaxant. It works by blocking nerve impulses (or pain sensations) that are sent to your brain.
Flexeril is used together with rest and physical therapy to treat skeletal muscle conditions such as pain, injury, or spasms.
Flexeril may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.
Before taking this medicine
You should not use Flexeril if you are allergic to cyclobenzaprine, or if you have:
a thyroid disorder;
heart block, heart rhythm disorder, congestive heart failure; or
if you have recently had a heart attack.
Flexeril is not approved for use by anyone younger than 15 years old.
Do not use Flexeril if you have taken an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. A dangerous drug interaction could occur. MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, linezolid, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, and tranylcypromine.
Some medicines can interact with cyclobenzaprine and cause a serious condition called serotonin syndrome. Be sure your doctor knows if you also take stimulant medicine, opioid medicine, herbal products, or medicine for depression, mental illness, Parkinson's disease, migraine headaches, serious infections, or prevention of nausea and vomiting. Ask your doctor before making any changes in how or when you take your medications.
To make sure Flexeril is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have ever had:
It is not known whether cyclobenzaprine will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
It may not be safe to breast-feed while using this medicine. Ask your doctor about any risk.
Older adults may be more sensitive to the effects of this medicine.
How should I take Flexeril?
Flexeril is usually taken once daily for only 2 or 3 weeks. Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose.
Take the medicine at the same time each day.
Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve after 3 weeks, or if they get worse.
Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.
What happens if I miss a dose?
Take the medicine as soon as you can, but skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not take two doses at one time.
What happens if I overdose?
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. An overdose of cyclobenzaprine can be fatal.
What to avoid
Avoid driving or hazardous activity until you know how cyclobenzaprine will affect you. Your reactions could be impaired.
Avoid drinking alcohol. Dangerous side effects could occur.
Flexeril side effects
Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to Flexeril: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Stop using Flexeril and call your doctor at once if you have:
fast or irregular heartbeats;
chest pain or pressure, pain spreading to your jaw or shoulder; or
sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), slurred speech, balance problems.
Seek medical attention right away if you have symptoms of serotonin syndrome, such as: agitation, hallucinations, fever, sweating, shivering, fast heart rate, muscle stiffness, twitching, loss of coordination, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.
Serious side effects may be more likely in older adults.
Common Flexeril side effects may include:
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.
What other drugs will affect Flexeril?
Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially:
cold or allergy medicine that contains an antihistamine (Benadryl and others);
medicine to treat Parkinson's disease;
medicine to treat overactive bladder; or
bronchodilator asthma medication.
This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with cyclobenzaprine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible drug interactions are listed here.
Immediate-release cyclobenzaprine tablets work in about 30 to 60 minutes to start relieving your muscle spasm pain. Its duration of action is 4 to 6 hours and it is typically given 3 times per day. It may take up to 7 days for you to see the full therapeutical effect. The extended-release cyclobenzaprine capsules (brand name: Amrix) are usually given once per day but may take longer to start working. Cyclobenzaprine use for periods longer than 2 or 3 weeks is not recommended.
Yes, cyclobenzaprine can make you very sleepy and this side effect may get worse with higher doses. Drowsiness is the most commonly reported side effect in studies, occurring in up to 38% (38 out of 100) of people. Fatigue and dizziness may also occur. Avoid or limit the use of alcohol or other sedating medicines while being treated with cyclobenzaprine. Also avoid driving, operating machinery, or other hazardous activities until you know how cyclobenzaprine affects you.
Flexeril is not a physically addictive drug like an opioid or a benzodiazepine, and is not a controlled substance. Flexeril would not normally be tested for in a routine workplace drug screen; however, there have been reports of Flexeril causing a false-positive result for tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs). Flexeril is closely related structurally to the tricyclic antidepressants, e.g., amitriptyline and imipramine. Continue reading
For most adults and adolescents 15 years of age and older, the maximum recommended dose of immediate-release cyclobenzaprine tablets is 10 mg three times a day. The maximum adult dose of the extended-release cyclobenzaprine (brand name: Amix) is 30 mg once per day. Always follow your doctor's dosing instructions. Continue reading
Common antidepressants used for orthopedic pain relief may include SSRIs like fluoxetine (Prozac), paroxetine (Paxil), and sertraline (Zoloft), SNRIs such as duloxetine (Cymbalta), or tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) like amitriptyline (Elavil) or nortriptyline (Pamelor). Continue reading
Flexeril (cyclobenzaprine) is a fast-acting medicine and you should start to feel some muscle relaxant effects within 30 minutes to one hour. The full effect can take up to 7 days. The drowsy side effect will set in quickly, too, so be sure you are not driving or doing other hazardous activities. Continue reading
No, cyclobenzaprine is not classified as a controlled substance by the DEA and does not have physically addictive or abuse properties like an opioid or benzodiazepine. It is not an opioid ("narcotic") drug. However, as with many drugs, some patients may feel psychologically dependent or experience withdrawal symptoms upon discontinuation of cyclobenzaprine. Continue reading
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- Drug class: skeletal muscle relaxants
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Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use Flexeril only for the indication prescribed.
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
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