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Baclofen (Injection)

Baclofen (BAK-loe-fen)

Treats muscle spasms caused by multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, or damage to the brain or spinal cord. This medicine is a muscle relaxer.

Brand Name(s):

Gablofen, Lioresal Intrathecal Refill Kit, Lioresal Intrathecal Screening Kit

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

You should not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to baclofen.

How to Use This Medicine:

Injectable

  • Your doctor will prescribe your exact dose. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. This medicine is given through a needle directly into your spinal cord.
  • You will first be given one or two test doses, to see if this medicine will work for you. A nurse or other trained health professional will give you this test dose in a clinic or hospital. You will need to stay for 4 to 8 hours to make sure the medicine does not cause any problems.
  • If your muscle spasms get better with the test dose, then you may be able to start using this medicine all the time. You will need to have a special pump placed under your skin, which will pump medicine directly into your back all day.
  • This medicine comes with patient instructions. Read and follow these instructions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
  • Your family or other caregivers need to how to properly use your pump and medicine. Make sure you and your caregivers all know these three things: (1) Signs that you are getting too much or too little medicine. (2) What to do if you have any of these signs. (3) How to care for the pump and the needle that is placed in your back.

If a dose is missed:

  • Keep all appointments to check and refill your pump so you do not run out of medicine. This medicine needs to be given on a fixed schedule. If you miss an appointment, schedule a new one right away and call your doctor for instructions.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any supplies you do not need.
  • Keep all medicine away from children and never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using any other medicine to treat your MS, cerebral palsy, or related muscle problems. Tell your doctor if you are using any medicines that make you sleepy. These include sleeping pills, cold and allergy medicine, narcotic pain relievers, and sedatives.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease or any kind of infection. Tell your doctor if you have ever had problems with involuntary (reflex) muscles (such as those used for digestion). Make sure your doctor knows if you are being treated for mental illness, such as psychosis or schizophrenia.
  • Tell your doctor if you have ever used baclofen before, and if you had problems when you stopped using it.
  • Call your doctor and go to the nearest emergency room right away if you have any of these symptoms: high fever, increased muscle spasms or stiffness, confusion, lightheadedness, unusual thoughts, itching, or numbness and tingling. These are signs that you are not receiving enough medicine. This is dangerous. Know what the pump alarm sounds like and what to do if the alarm goes off.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly without asking your doctor. You may need to slowly decrease your dose before stopping it completely.
  • Ask your doctor for an Emergency Card listing the symptoms that may happen if you get too much or too little medicine. Carry the card with you at all times.
  • Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits while you are using this medicine. Be sure to keep all appointments.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving, using machines, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Decrease in how much or how often you urinate
  • Fainting, shallow breathing, seizures
  • Muscle weakness
  • Pain, redness, or swelling around the pump or needle
  • Unusual sleepiness, tiredness, or lightheadedness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Agitation, mild headache
  • Nausea, vomiting, constipation

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088


Last Updated: 4/4/2014
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