Gabapentin

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Gabapentin

Gabapentin Capsules

100mg Gabapentin is a GABA analog. It was originally developed to treat epilepsy, and currently is used to relieve neuropathic pain. The use of gabapentin in dogs is primarily to manage chronic nerve pain, with mild effectiveness managing seizures.

As with human use, the mechanism that allows the medication to work is not well...

Gabapentin Capsules

100mg Gabapentin is a GABA analog. It was originally developed to treat epilepsy, and currently is used to relieve neuropathic pain. The use of gabapentin in dogs is primarily to manage chronic nerve pain, with mild effectiveness managing seizures.

As with human use, the mechanism that allows the medication to work is not well understood, however, while it is structurally similar to the neurotransmitter GABA, it does not negatively affect its function.

Gabapentin contains the active ingredient Gabapentin and is available in the following strengths: 100mg Gabapentin

A Veterinary Pet Prescription is required for Gabapentin

Using Gabapentin for dogs (Epilepsy and Pain relief)

Gabapentin may be prescribed for your dog if they suffer from epilepsy, and/or to help with the treatment and management of chronic pain. If your vet has prescribed or recommended using Gabapentin for your own dog, this article will provide you with some more information on the medication, how it is used, and what problems it can help with.

Gabapentin is a medication that is marketed as an analgesic (pain killer) and anticonvulsant, and was originally developed to treat epilepsy in people. Gabapentin is administered orally, and for people, can be taken in either capsule or liquid form, but for dogs is only available in capsule form, as the liquid formulation contains xylitol, which is toxic to dogs.

Gabapentin is sometimes sold under the trade name of Neurontin.

Why might my dog be prescribed Gabapentin?

Gabapentin is used off-label for the treatment of dogs, which means that it is first and foremost a human medication that is also used in veterinary practice (under the cascade scheme), as it has proven to be helpful in many cases for dogs as well as people. Gabapentin was firstly designed for the treatment of epilepsy, and so may be prescribed for epileptic dogs prone to seizures, but it is also an effective pain reliever, and so may be administered to dogs to help with the management of chronic pain.

Gabapentin may be prescribed for dogs with epilepsy, or for dogs with various conditions that cause chronic pain, including cancer, arthritis, and the nerve pain and damage that can sometimes present as complications of canine diabetes.

How does Gabapentin work?

Gabapentin is an anticonvulsant, which also has analgesic properties. Gabapentin stabilises the brain’s electrical impulses, mimicking the activity of GABA neurotransmitters, which work to calm electrical nerve activity in the brain.

When used to treat epileptic seizures, Gabapentin works by decreasing abnormal electrical activity in the brain, particularly excitement, which can mean that epileptic dogs will suffer from fewer seizures than those untreated, and that their seizures will be milder and shorter in duration.

When used to treat chronic pain, Gabapentin works by changing the way that the body senses pain and the messages received by the pain centres of the brain, lowering the common symptoms of pain such as aching, burning sensations and stabbing or pulsing pain.

How is Gabapentin administered?

Gabapentin needs to be given on an ongoing basis to prove effective, which means long term usage for epileptic dogs, and continued treatment when used for chronic pain until the condition is resolved.

Gabapentin comes in tablet form administered orally, and the tablets should be swallowed with food.

  • In the treatment of canine epilepsy, dogs should be given 4.5mg of Gabapentin per lb of bodyweight every 8-12 hours.
  • In the treatment of chronic pain, dogs should be given 1.4mg of Gabapentin per lb of bodyweight once per day.

Gabapentin should not be used within two hours of giving your dog antacids, and is not suitable for use in pregnant or nursing bitches.

Are there any side effects?

Gabapentin is usually well tolerated by dogs, and is one of the preferred treatments for the long term management of seizures and pain. However, like all medications, there is a small chance of side effects developing in dogs treated with Gabapentin, although these are often restricted to the initial stages of treatment. Potential side effects of Gabapentin can include drowsiness, vomiting and diarrhoea, swollen limbs and loss of coordination. If you notice any of these symptoms in your own dog, consult your vet for advice.

In rare cases, some dogs may prove to be allergic to Gabapentin or one of the inactive ingredients within the capsule, which can present as an acute allergic reaction in the dog. Symptoms to be on the lookout for include swelling of the face, lips or tongue, breathing difficulties, or hives. If you spot any of these symptoms in your dog, contact your vet as an emergency.

Some other medications may interact with Gabapentin, including vitamins and supplements, so ensure that your vet is fully informed about what your dog eats and any other supplements or medications that they take as part of the consultation process before you begin giving Gabapentin to your dog.

How can I get Gabapentin for my dog?

Gabapentin is a POM medication, which means that it can only be obtained with a prescription. Once your vet decides that Gabapentin is appropriate for your dog, you can ask your vet for a prescription for Gabapentin and then order your medication from us.

Never stop giving Gabapentin to your dog, or change their dosage without speaking to your vet first, and contact your vet if you have any questions or concerns about your dog’s treatment.

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