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Baclofen Patient Tips

How it works

Experts are not sure how baclofen works to relieve muscle spasms but suggest it works directly on nerve impulses in the spine.


    Baclofen is used to relieve muscle spasms such as those caused by multiple sclerosis or spinal cord damage. It is not effective for muscle spasms caused by rheumatoid arthritis or other conditions such as stroke or Parkinson's disease.
  • May also be used off-label to treat other conditions such as hiccups or Tourette's syndrome.


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:

  • Nausea and vomiting, headache and confusion.
  • Sedation which may affect your ability to drive or operate machinery. Avoid alcohol.

Notes: In general, seniors or children, people with certain medical conditions (such as liver or kidney problems, heart disease, diabetes, seizures) or people who take other medications are more at risk of developing a wider range of side effects. For a complete list of all side effects, click here.

Bottom Line

Baclofen relieves muscle spasm due to certain conditions but its use is limited by its ability to cause sedation and increase seizure risk.


  • Treatment should be started at a low dose and increased gradually.
  • Because of the risk of sedation, be cautious when driving or operating machinery until you know the effects of the drug on your mental functioning.

Response and Effectiveness

Onset of action varies between individuals and may range from hours to several weeks.


Baclofen [package insert]. Revised 10/2015 Northstar RxLLC. Accessed 02/2016

  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use baclofen only for the indication prescribed.

  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that this information is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. This drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. It is an informational resource designed as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of this information. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2017 Revision Date: 2015-12-16 23:05:18