Lyrica (Pregabalin) is an anti-epileptic drug, or anticonvulsant, used to control seizures and to treat fibromyalgia. It can also be used to treat pain caused by the nerve damage characteristic of certain conditions. This drug is taken orally and is available in capsule form.
Starting Dosage for Lyrica
The recommended starting Lyrica dosage is 150mg a day, for all conditions it typically treats. However, because the drug is eliminated primarily by renal excretion, patients who have a problem with kidney function may be started on a lower dose.
- For treatment of fibromyalgia, the starting daily dose is divided into 2; in other words patients take 75mg of the drug twice a day.
- To treat diabetic nerve pain, the dosage is split into 3 or 50mg three times daily.
- For both pain after shingles and partial onset seizures in adults with epilepsy, the dosage is divided into either 2 or 3.
Ongoing/Therapeutic Dosage Ranges
Within 1 week a patient’s Lyrica dose can be increased based on efficacy and tolerability.
- For management of fibromyalgia, the dose is initially raised to 300mg daily and then up to 450mg/daily maximum if necessary.
- For treatment of diabetic nerve pain, the dose may be increased to a maximum of 300mg daily.
- In patients suffering post-shingles pain, the daily dosage is also initially raised to 300mg a day but can ultimately be increased to 600mg if the individual does not experience pain relief within a few weeks.
- The maximum dosage for adult patients with partial onset seizures is also 600mg a day.
Dosages indicated above are taken in smaller amounts at 2 or 3 times a day to build up the daily dosage.
Dosage Tips and Warnings
- Lyrica can be taken with or without food.
- Patients who need help in remembering to take their daily dose find it useful to take it at the same time every day and in combination with other daily activities such as eating meals or brushing teeth.
- Although eventual increases in dosages are typical, do not self-adjust the dose without consulting a healthcare provider first.
- Do not suddenly stop the dosage without discussing it with a doctor as sudden stoppage of the medication can lead to withdrawal symptoms or increased seizures.
Although Lyrica is a useful drug, it must be handled extremely carefully. The medication should be taken exactly as prescribed by the patient’s healthcare provider and is only to be used by the person it was prescribed for. If a patient has any concerns or questions about the medication, he or she should consult their doctor.