Your experience with Gabapentin please

I'm 8 weeks post op from laminectomy/discectomy as of today.   Was doing really well, virtually no pain, walking all I wanted ect.  Started having pain at about 5 weeks, mostly from turning over and getting out of bed.  The pain is sharp like I am hitting a nerve root but no sciatica like before surgery though when I hit the nerve, it does send a message down the leg but no biggie.  Called my doc about it and I am nine days into a 12 day course of prednisone.  Can't really say it has helped much and I am titrating down on it as of 3 days ago.    I have next follow up with him on 10/24.  I imagine he will either continue me on the prednisone or perhaps try me on some Gabapentin.  I'd like to know from others who have been on it, i.e. how long were on it, how did it make you feel, and were you able to come off of it pain free at some point.  Thanks mutely!


  • MagistraMarlaMMagistraMarla San Antonio, TexasPosts: 78
    I've been taking Gabapentin since 2010.  It was prescribed by a neurologist who thought that my leg spasms came from having spastic paraplegia.  I've never been able to take it during the day, but I usually take two along with a Flexeril at bedtime and it does help with the nighttime leg spasms.
    After the problem was found in my spine, I had surgery in April, 2015.  The surgeon told me to stop taking it at my three month check-up and didn't refill my prescription.  My rheumatologist was not at all happy about that, since she could tell that my leg spasms were still there, so she refilled my prescription.
    That surgery failed, and I will have revision surgery next week.  I'm sure that I'll be taking Gabapentin around the clock for a while, but I'm really hoping that I can taper off and finally stop taking it.
    It has been a good anti-spasmodic for me, and I'm sensitive to medication.  Anything that works without making me sick is a good thing.
  • Kimberly9591Kimberly9591 Los AngelesPosts: 92
    I've been taking Gabapentin for about 19 days now. I started to get sciatic relief maybe four days into taking it and have experienced no sciatic pain since my microdiscectomy I had about 12 days ago. My doctor has me take the gabapentin post surgery because she said some studies show it helps nerves recover after they experienced a lot of trauma (like being pinched by a disk or moved around in surgery). I don't feel any different on it, usually I'm supposed to take it before bed but sometimes I stay awake a few hours after taking it and I've even drank a few beers on it and feel completely normal. Pain management doctor said it makes some people feel "stoned." I do not feel any side effects at all. 
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  • I had a reaction to it and got horrible migraine headaches... Which is funny cuz it's a migraine medicine. Lol.
  • chonnacchonna JoplinPosts: 28
    Been on it for years and it's great stuff.   I sometimes feel as though I'm walking "on the dock of the bay"  a slight swaying motion, and I occasionally search for a word.  But I wouldn't give it up.  I take 600 mg 3 times a day, I have severe scoliosis. But I'm having surgery to correct that in about two weeks.  I'm 66 years old.
  • That's good to hear, sounds like it affect different folks differently.  Has your doc said about when you'd be coming off of it?
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  • That's great to hear that it has been so helpful for you.  Does your doc believe you might be able to come off of it at some point after your surgery?
  • KimbraKimbra AustraliaPosts: 57
    My pain management doctor put me on a low dose 3x a day a week before my surgery which  (along with a bunch of other pain meds) got me through without sciatic pain. I'm now day 5 post op and taking 2 tablets 3 times a day. No issues, doesn't make me feel woozy or stoned or even drowsy. No doubt after my post op consult I'll either get a repeat script or stop taking it, not sure 
  • Hi, I take 300 X 3 a day. I have heard much over 1000mg a day can cause weight gain. I find it really helps the nerve pain. I too have struggles with remembering words but at the moment I'd take that over the nerve pain any day!!!!
  • chonnacchonna JoplinPosts: 28

    I expect to come off it sometime after the surgery, but it is my surgeon's drug of choice for nerve pain.  I've gained 20 pounds so I look forward to losing that and regaining my memory.

  • smartens162smartens162 Manitoba, CanadaPosts: 361
    I was on it for about a year, 9 months while I waited for discectomy surgery and then 3-4 months post-surgery. I gained 27 lbs while on it, and I've struggled to lose it since. It was one of a few prescriptions I was taking for the incredible nerve pain, and it just took the edge off...but I took what I could get. I was on 600mg x 3 a day. It made me 'numb' to the pain, but also to pleasure. Emotionally, I didn't care about much at all. This was all a tolerable trade-off for the pain. The worst for me was coming off of it. Tapered slowly as prescribed, but sank slower into depression and anxiety the whole way too. Once I researched it and realized this was withdrawal, I at least knew I wasn't going bonkers and muddled through til I was completely off. I hope I never have to go on it again, but if worse came to worst I would probably do it again. Good luck to you!
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