Epilepsy Home > Lyrica Abuse

As with other controlled substances, there is the possibility of becoming addicted to Lyrica. One sign of Lyrica abuse is the body not being able to function properly after the medication is stopped. If you are taking increasing doses of Lyrica or feel like you cannot stop the medicine, talk with a healthcare provider. Lyrica addiction is a serious problem that requires treatment.

An Overview of Lyrica Abuse

Lyrica® (pregabalin) is a prescription medication used to treat fibromyalgia and certain types of nerve pain and seizures. Studies have also shown that Lyrica is effective as an anxiety treatment -- though it is not approved for this use. Lyrica is a controlled substance. As with other controlled substances, there is the possibility of becoming addicted to Lyrica. Addiction or "dependence" is when a person feels like he or she needs to continue to take a medicine, even when no medical need is present.
Lyrica addiction is more likely if the medicine has been taken daily for a longer period of time or at higher doses. It is also more likely in people with a history of alcohol or drug addiction.

Can Lyrica Be Abused?

Before new medications can be approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), they usually must go through studies to assess their potential to be abused. In such studies for Lyrica, drug abusers who were given a dose of Lyrica reported feeling a "good drug effect" or "high" from the medication. They rated Lyrica as being similar to diazepam (Valium®) in terms of its ability to produce a high.
It is not known how Lyrica can produce a high. It does not act in the parts or receptors of the brain that are usually associated with drug abuse. Because it is a fairly new medication, it is not known if it will become a popular drug of abuse.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
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