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Neurontin-weight gain

L-DoggLL-Dogg Posts: 101
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:33 AM in Pain Medications
Hi all.....it has been so long since I posted here. I was on the original Spine Health Forum with tons of posts, then changed my username when I rolled over to this one. I am the old Gypsyguitar for those who remember me.

My brief back story is a set wall fell on me at work in 2006. I work on the TV show 24. I worked through the season and was in so much lower back pain and my left foot was starting to freak out so I had fusion at L4/5 in June 2007. I had ALIF and PLIF on two consecutive days

The fusion was successful, I had a fully bony bridge by 8 weeks and it just continued to harden well.

In August 2008 I had my hardware taken out.

While my back pain is still there, it is way better than before surgery. I continue with Norco 10/325 and Percocet 10/325 for breakthrough.

The problem is the ongoing nerve pains in my feet....here to stay I fear. I tried Lyrica but I hated it so he switched me to Neurontin. At first only 400mg a day but currently on 1600mg a day and he wants it up to 2000mg a day.

I have gained some weight and I cannot tell from what. I am tall and slender.....(-ish ) :^o so any amount is noticeable....and this is noticeable....mostly in my midesction :) .

I cannot tell if I am eating any different...a bit more perhaps since we are in full swing and I eat a bit more for energy. It seems my metabolism has slowed down even more. It slowed down with the opiates for sure, now seems slower.

All in all though, I am not doing much different. I eat but I am on my feet and expending a ton of energy for 12 hours a day, every day. I get home and am still on the go with 3 and 8 year old girls....chores, supermarket etc.

I run on 5-6 hours sleep. All around high energy life....no slacking here.

So where is this weight coming from?

Has anyone else using Neurontin noticed a slow, steady increase in weight?

Thanks.....oh and Hi to all my old Spiney friends :H .


  • Welcome back! I'm not a doctor, but I was told by my PM that the weight gain is caused by water retention. I had a bad incident while I was taking Neurontin, so I'm not taking it now, but in only about 10 days, I had gained 10 lbs. He did want to try a few other meds with it (after the "incident"), including Hydrochlorothiazide (supposed to help the edema), but since I was already taking it for HBP, that was nixed.

    I'm happy to report that after having been "off" it for only a bit over a week, the weight is gone again, so I tend to believe that it was, indeed, water weight.

    You should ask your doctor, maybe he will know of something you can do for it.

    Good luck!
  • Interesting thanks. I take the diuretic Maxzide for mild hypertension...so I am sure it helps then with the water retention. Maybe I'd be in deep doody without it. Maybe I could discuss upping that.

    You should have seen what the Lyrica did for water retention. I had to get off it fast.

    The Neurontin really helps. Without it all kinds of funny stuff goes off in my feet. Burning soles, tingling, pins and needles, stabbing pain and my all time favorite....the ice pick in the big toe =))

    Luvly stuff!!!

    So I want to consider staying with the Neurontin. Obviously I now have to toss out some old eating habits and use nutrition and targeted exercise to lose weight and trim my midsection.

    It is just so annoying how this just sorta crept up and then when I upped the Neurontin from 400 to 1600 it was whammo....

    Anyway, thanks.
  • Yes the weight gain can be quite depressing. I had lost that 10 lbs over about a 2 month period, very safely, so needless to say when I gained it all back in just over a week (still on the same food intake), I was disheartened. It's good to have it "back off" again! But truthfully, if I had it my way, I would still be taking the Neurontin, as with you, it worked wonders, and I needed nothing else for pain.

    Good luck to you!
  • I gained 15lbs in about 3 weeks on Neurontin and was starting to get edema, so I was taken off and switched to Lyrica. On Lyrica I gained another 15lbs in less than a week, and my feet blew up to an enormous size. It was so bad they were cracking and bleeding in places. You could hear a gurgly sound when I laid down. And I could even see swelling in my face. So the water was everywhere really. I also got really high blood pressure, like 160/105. I've since been put on hydrochlorothiazide and lisinopril. Most of the edema is gone but my feet do still tend to swell some at night especially if I've been on my feet most of the day. I used to have low/normal blood pressure, not anymore. So that side effect is permanent for me. I was on them in May/June of last year. The weight did all come off and an extra 5 lbs too and I didn't even change exercise or eating habits. So I'm sure most of it was water weight.
  • sunny1966ssunny1966 VIRGINIAPosts: 1,385
    I gained over fifteen lbs. the first month on neurontin. I took it for maybe three months then stopped because it made me crazier than normal. I have lost the weight since stopping it though so maybe it is water weight. Hope it helps you. It did help my feet too where I have nerve pain from mortons neuroma surgery.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    Wow! Its been a long time since I've seen your member name. I hope things are overall going well for you.
    I too did not like the experiences with Lyrica.
    My legs/ankles/toes swelled so much, it was ugly.

    Now with Neurontin, I have had all good success. I am now using about 2400mg a day. It has helped so much with my nerve pain.

    But yes, the weight gain. Without changing any of my eating habits, exercise, etc, just being on Neurontin played a role in putting on about 20 pounds over a year. It seems no matter how hard I try, the pounds just dont come off.

    Big trade off! Relief from Nerve pain, but weight gain.
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Before starting Neurontin I had unintentionally lost 20 pounds. My primary doc told me that the weight loss was likely due to lack of appetite caused by chronic pain.

    When I first started Neurontin (300mg 3x daily) I definately noticed the water retention. When I woke up my fingers were swollen like little sausages and my shoes barely fit.

    I'm now on 400mg 3x daily and I'm actually taking it 3x daily. In the past I would occasionally only take it at night or when the nerve pain was excrutiating. In the last two weeks I've gained 4 lbs. It could be water retention due to my Neurontin or maybe it's just nearing "that time of the month". However, I no longer have swollen fingers and toes in the morning like I did when I first started the medication.

    What I have experienced while taking Neurontin regularly and even semi-regularly is an increase in appetite! In my case, an ACTUAL appetite. At one point during a "chow down" session it occured to me that I had actually scoured the fridge and cupboards looking for various things to eat. And EATING many of the things that I found! =))

    In the last three months I've eaten more Hagen Dasz, chocolates, and gummies than I have in the last five years! Really! :jawdrop: And I was never a chocolate lover!

    The hunger episodes have died down some but I really need to start monitoring what I'm eating.

    And that's my Neurontin story! <:P

  • Nice sense of humor!!! It made me smile, I am glad to hear that this med works on alot of people, the weight gain makes me nervous as I am a diabetic. I already take a diuretic so maybe that will help with weight gain.

    Keep making us laugh
  • I gained 20 lbs on Lyrica and now the Dr prescribed Cymbalta which works great for the leg and foot pain. I've lost 17 pounds just reducing the lyrica to 150 mg. I've cut the calories down and try to do some walking. I'm also on a water pill which has helped with the swelling. I can wear shoes now! Good luck with the show. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • :D I had an interesting experience yesterday while at work.

    My spine Doc wants me at 2400mg of Neurontin. He wanted me to up the amount gradually. I have sort of been at 1600 and thought I was good to go to increase.

    On Thursday ..I inadvertently took too much. Somehow I miscalculated and took 3200mg. I did not calculate well with the new 400mg capsules I just got.I am not dumb with these things-just really tired from work and always in a hurry.

    Plus I took 1200mg when I went to bed which was around 11:45PM and then another 1200 in my blurry morning fog, at 5:30AM. Not a lot of time in between these big doses.

    I got to work on Friday and noticed I did not feel too good. I have been trying to cut back on the Norco's and Percocets so I knew it was not a buzz from the pain meds I was feeling.

    I got incredibly tired and my eyes started pulsing. Vision was odd...some balance issues but mostly deep tiredness. In fact at one point after I told my boss I had OD'd on Neurontin and he left the office saying "I'm going to set, take care of things up here".....within 2 seconds of him walking out I nodded off sitting in my chair....passed out is more like it. Bam-gone! I was awoken when he walked in some time later and my head snapped up when I heard the door. At least we got a laugh out of it!

    It was a rough day-plus I could not leave as we had a lot going on and I was prepping for a huge week coming up. It was awful. I had my wits about me but I just wanted to lay down and sleep.

    So I called the Pharmacist and he said to just not take any more on Friday and resume Saturday, just to increase slowly.

    So today I took 800 in the AM and then 800 at around 1:30.

    I still feel so groggy, irritable, uncoordinated etc etc...my vision is bad etc and after lunch I lay down and fel asleep, a glorious sleep until my wife came in and booted me out, telling me to go watch the kids it was her turn!

    I don't know what to do. I know I have to make some calls on Monday to my surgeon who prescribed, and my Pharmacist. In the meantime though I wonder what to do......just only take one perhaps tonight?

    Does this stuff have an accumulative effect? Has anyone else had strange thoughts and tiredness?

    YES on the increased appetite. My co-workers notice it. Yesterday at lunch I grabbed a hamburger and a chili dog while everyone else was doing a salad or wrap. A couple guys said something like "Holy Crap!!" when seeing my plate.

    I had not really connected the dots with appetite until a day or so ago.

    Hi Ron, good to see you again.
  • I gained a little weight - less than 10 lbs while on Neurontin - and I only got up to about 800 mg. I had to stop it mainly due to the side effect of seriously watering eyes. Never had this problem before or since Neurontin.

    I've got an rx for Lyrica, but I've been very hesitant to try it b/c I don't want to gain weight. I know - only one way to find out. It's kind of the devil I know vs. the devil I don't know. :-)

    Close to 100% spondy at L5/S1
    No surgeries
  • some people do gain weight from this type of medication its very similar to prednisone {steroid} in the way it make you put on weight.i am one off the unlucky ones i have chrone desies too along with my back problems and i was on prednisone but put around 2 stone in over 12 months and it took me 3 years to shift it {this is when i was still active before that last surgery} i dont take prednisone any more but i have taken gabapentin and pregabalin {lyrica} and i put 3 stone on in as many months!!!!!!!!! i had e to stop taking this drug as along with the weight gain i went in to urinary retention and i was full of fluid ..nasty!! when i stopped taking them i spent all weekend peeing!!{sorry} but i did loose the water ..the weight ..on the other hand i still have .partley because iam sat on my arse all day !
  • Hello Everyone...
    I am new and this is my first post...I had been taking 300 mgs of this med 3 times a day for about 6 months..no weight gain...now, I have been taking 600 3 times a day for about 4 months...no weight gain. I am amazed as all I can do is barely get from the couch to the chair to the bathroom. See surgeon tomorrow...this will be my 3rd surgery...and, I absolutely cannot wait for pain relief. Currently on morphine and neurontin...
  • I started on neurontin about 4 months before my surgery. gradually increased to I think 2400mg before surgery 2-4-09. I actually had lost about 15pounds at that time. I was doing good with the neurontin @2400mg a day.Losing the weight was prolly due to my nerves and having the neck and back pain just took my appetite away. After surgery doc. wanted to up the dose to 3600mg over one month. (bad idea for me)
    I turned into a jerky, shacking, nervy person, any noise out of the blue scared me,body parts would just fling out of control.Then I had left sided facial numbness, and be abit twitchy like... mega doses of Novocain...This lasted 8 days I would wake up and it would be there very lightly but as soon as I moved any part of my left side of face it would start up.(long story with that. Anyone interested p.m. me)I seen 2 doc's and surgeon while this was going on.. and many test.. Went back down on the neurontin to 1800mgs in 2 days.. fast decrease but under doc.s watch.. (because I was not on this for seizures I would be less likely to have problems with cutting down fast.Doc said.I was actually having all the symptoms that we take neurontin for times 10 on the high dose. Everyone reacts different on meds.My surgeon said he had seen this before with neurontin, and said half sided face numbness had nothing to do with surgery.. it was the strangest thing one eye, half my nose,half my tongue,lips, cheek and forehead.. straight up the middle of face.
    I now take 1800mgs a day and do great on it.It does wonders for my nerve pain.And would be screaming without it.. but does nothing for other pain..
    I'm back to my normal weight but don't think neurontin effects my weight.Its hard when we used to be so active and cant be like that now(for me anyway)
    Hugs to all.. sending special Smiles to all in need.Patsy
  • I have been told that lyrica, I am assuming neurotin is similar, causes weight gain due to the medication over riding the hunger mechanism that tells you that you are full.

    I am trying to figure out if neurotin has the same affect. I have gained way too much weight on lyrica and have to go off of it.
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