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Cyclobenzaprine: Pediatric Medication Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

This includes topical numbing patches, acetaminophen (Tylenol), or a muscle relaxant such as Flexeril. Cyclobenzaprine does not directly act on the neuromuscular intersection or the muscle. It relieves muscle spasms through a central action, possibly at the brainstem level. Cyclobenzaprine binds to the serotonin receptor and is a receptor antagonist that reduces muscle tone by decreasing the activity of descending serotonergic neurons.

However, it is important to consult with a qualified acupuncturist who has experience working with pregnant women to ensure the safety of the treatment. Other alternatives include meditation, yoga, and natural remedies such as hot/cold compresses and essential oils. Always consult with your healthcare provider before trying any alternative form of treatment during pregnancy. According to doctors and medical experts, the general rule of thumb is to minimize the use of medication during pregnancy, particularly during the first trimester when the fetal organs are developing. However, the use of Flexeril has been found to be safe under certain conditions. Healthcare providers can prescribe Flexeril during pregnancy, particularly when the benefits of pain relief outweigh the potential risks.

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This drug has been shown to be excreted in rat milk and achieve concentrations in the milk which are 50% of those in the rat maternal plasma. As this drug is closely related to the tricyclic antidepressants, some of which are known to be excreted in human milk, use caution especially when other drugs that cause sedation are used simultaneously. If you have questions about side effects, call your child’s doctor. Call your child’s doctor for medical advice about side effects.

One woman mentioned that she took Flexeril for back spasms during her third trimester and her baby was born with respiratory issues. While it is impossible to say for sure whether the medication was the cause of the baby’s respiratory issues, it is still important to report any negative side effects to your healthcare provider. Overall, it is important to weigh the potential risks and benefits of using Flexeril during pregnancy and to have open and honest discussions with your doctor.

Speak to a care advisor

Amitriptyline also is used with caution in patients with prostate enlargement because of the risk of increasing the inability to urinate. Amitriptyline is a tricyclic antidepressant (TCA) and is used for treating depression. Other TCAs include clomipramine (Anafranil), doxepin (Sinequan), imipramine (Tofranil), trimipramine (Surmontil), amoxapine (Amoxapine), desipramine (Norpramin), and protriptyline (Vivactil). Individuals with depression may have an imbalance in neurotransmitters, chemicals that nerves make and use to communicate with other nerves. Like all TCAs, amitriptyline increases levels of the neurotransmitter norepinephrine and serotonin, and blocks the action of acetylcholine, another neurotransmitter. It is believed that by restoring the balance of these different neurotransmitters in the brain that depression is alleviated.

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Muscle strain and backache may be common during pregnancy, but many drugs that are safe for most adults can be harmful to a pregnant woman or her fetus. Flexeril, known generically as cyclobenzaprine, is a muscle relaxant most often given for treatment of injury or muscle strain 1. If you are pregnant, tell your doctor about your condition and about all medications you are taking before taking any additional medication to make sure it is safe for you and your baby. Your doctor will decide whether Flexeril or any other medication is safe enough for you to take during pregnancy 1. Muscle relaxants like cyclobenzaprine, are not recommended for people 65 years or older and there are two reasons for this.

Flexeril Overdose

Animal studies done on rats and mice have demonstrated that up to 50 percent of the drug tends to appear in breast milk. Flexeril is to be avoided by nursing women; however, only a medical professional will decide whether you can take Flexeril if you are nursing. There is not enough research on the effects of cyclobenzaprine on human lactation but the studies are ongoing. However, the composition of cyclobenzaprine is similar to tricyclic antidepressants such as imipramine or amitriptyline, which do interact with breast milk.

Flexeril is only recommended to be taken for a short period of time — no more than two to three weeks. The guide reports that it is unclear whether or not it is safe to use during pregnancy. Even though animal trials indicate it most likely is safe, it is still best to exercise caution and only take Flexeril while pregnant if you absolutely have to. You may report side effects to your national health agency. This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with this drug.

  • Here are some measures you can use after your muscle injury for effective pain management.
  • Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.
  • A healthcare provider should determine how often Flexeril can be taken while breastfeeding.
  • The report indicates that the use of Flexeril in late pregnancy may lead to early ductal closure of the heart in utero.

Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug, especially drowsiness, confusion, constipation, or trouble urinating. Drowsiness and confusion can increase the risk of falling. Copyright 2023 by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. This information is designed as an educational aid for the public. It offers current information and opinions related to women’s health.

Current Studies

The medicine can be used safely under the guidance of a medical expert (Di Martino, A., Russo, F., Denaro, L. and Denaro, V., 2017). According to the observation from the Food and Drug Administration, it was tested on rats, mice and rabbits in their pregnancy. During the test, the animals were given 20 times more than the required dose. In spite of this, no severe effects were seen on the pregnant animals. During pregnancy, the lady faces discomfort from muscle-related issues.


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