30 Sec Answer: Gabapentin works on nerves in the brain and spinal cord that cause seizures, as well as other areas of the body where pain is experienced.
What Nerves Does Gabapentin Work On?
Gabapentin (brand name Neurontin) is an anticonvulsant medication commonly prescribed for the treatment of epilepsy, neuropathic pain, and other medical conditions. It has been used for more than 20 years to treat a variety of nerve-related issues, from sciatica to anxiety. But what nerves does gabapentin work on? In this article we will explore this question in detail.
How Does Gabapentin Work?
Gabapentin is a derivative of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), an inhibitory neurotransmitter found naturally in the brain and spinal cord. By increasing GABA levels in these regions, gabapentin helps to reduce electrical activity within the neurons, which reduces the frequency and intensity of seizures or other abnormal activities. It can also reduce symptoms associated with neuropathic pain such as burning, tingling, and numbness.
Where Are These Nerves Located?
The nerves that gabapentin affects are primarily located in the brain and spinal cord. Specifically, they are part of a network of nerves known as the gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA)ergic system. This system plays an important role in controlling seizures and regulating mood, emotion, and cognitive processes such as learning and memory. The GABAergic system also helps regulate pain perception by suppressing nerve signals associated with pain signals sent from peripheral tissues throughout the body.
What Other Areas Does Gabapentin Affect?
In addition to its effects on nerves in the brain and spinal cord, gabapentin can affect other areas of the body where pain is experienced. For example, it has been shown to be effective in treating postherpetic neuralgia (nerve pain caused by shingles), fibromyalgia (a condition characterized by widespread muscle and joint pain), migraine headaches, diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage due to diabetes), phantom limb syndrome (pain felt after amputation or injury), chronic low back pain, cancer-related neuropathic pain, and spasticity associated with multiple sclerosis or cerebral palsy. Additionally, gabapentin may be beneficial for reducing hot flashes related to menopause or certain types of chemotherapy treatments.
How Long Does It Take For Gabapentin To Start Working?
The effects of gabapentin vary depending on the individual and their particular condition; however, most people notice some level of improvement within one week of beginning treatment. It can take up to several weeks before its full therapeutic effects are realized. During this time period it is important to monitor your response closely and speak with your doctor about any potential side effects you experience during treatment.
Are There Any Side Effects Associated With Taking Gabapentin?
Yes, there are some potential side effects associated with taking gabapentin. Common side effects include dizziness, drowsiness, nausea/vomiting, blurred vision, unsteady coordination/movement problems, fatigue/weakness, swelling hands/feet/ankles/lower legs, dry mouth/throat/eyes, loss of appetite/weight loss/nausea or vomiting, constipation/diarrhea, abdominal pain or discomfort/constipation/gas pains or cramps/heartburns or indigestion/upset stomachs/acid refluxes or GERD’s(Gastroesophageal Reflux Diseases). If you experience any unusual changes while taking gabapentin it is important to contact your doctor right away.
Is There Any Risk Of Dependence Or Abuse With Gabapentin?
No significant risk for dependence or abuse has been found when using gabapentin appropriately as prescribed by a doctor for medical purposes only. However it is still important to use caution if you have a history of substance abuse disorder since drugs like gabapentin can still increase the risk for abuse even if taken correctly according to directions given by a doctor.
What Should I Do If I Have Further Questions About Using Gabapentin?
If you have questions about using gabapentin then it is best to speak with your doctor who knows your personal health history and can answer any questions you may have specifically about how this medication might affect you personally. They will be able to provide additional guidance regarding safety concerns as well as provide information about alternative medications or therapies that could be better suited for your needs instead of taking gabapentin.