Lyrica (generic name Pregabalin) is the next generation drug of Gabapentin (brand name Neurontin). Manufacturer of Neurontin, Pfizer, slightly modified Gabapentin to introduce Lyrica. FDA approved the drug in December 2004 and it is extensively used for treating pains that are caused from neurologic diseases like postherpetic neuralgia, diabetic nerve pains and shingles. It is also used to treat seizures and fibromyalgia.
How Lyrica Works
Exact action mechanism of Pregabalin is yet to be ascertained. Neurotransmitters are chemicals used by nerves for communicating with each other. It is assumed that the drug binds to calcium channels of the nerves, decreasing the release of neurotransmitters and lowering communication ability among nerves. Decrease in this communication ability, contributes to Pregabalin's effect on pain and seizures.
Side Effects of Lyrica
Dry mouth, accumulation of fluid, drowsiness, weight gain, blurred vision are some common side effects of using Pregabalin. Some serious side effects include reduction in platelet count, severe muscle pain and weakness. There may be cases where user of the drug shows signs of congestive heart failure and difficulty in breathing. In December 2008, FDA issued warnings that use of Pregabalin may increase suicidal tendency. Users of the drug experiencing anxiety, depression, behavior change or mental agitation should get in touch with health care provider.
Neurontin, the drug that preceded Lyrica has been subjected to several lawsuits. These lawsuits attempt to establish that use of the drug triggered suicidal tendency. Recent case studies and analysis done by FDA has reveled that this claim may have some justifications. In March 2010, $140 million was awarded by a jury as compensation in Neurontin case. Similar cases for Lyrica are expected to follow.
If you feel that use of Lyrica has affected you or your dear ones adversely then you may file lawsuits to claim damage for it. Professional guidance of a lawyer specializing in product liability or dangerous drugs is required for this purpose.