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How long till Baclofen works?

After trying massage therapy on my chronic chest injury, my muscle spasms exploded in intensity and took a turn for the worse, way worse(mostly in my right pectoral). Because of this I have now been out of work and school for 6 weeks and any movements in my upper right arm, however seemingly mundane and minimal, flares up my muscle spasms leaving me bedridden for the majority of each day.

For these spasms, my Dr. put me on 10mg Baclofen at 1/2pill 3x a day, increasing 1/2pill every 3 days till Im up to 2pills 3x a day. Anyway it's been 5 days now and I haven't noticed any noticable results so I was wondering if anyone has any experience;

how long did it take to notice results from Baclofen?

Thankfully, I haven't had any side effects from the med so I don't mind continuing taking it until I'm at full dose but I'm desperate for some let up from these spasms so i can get back to my life. Though I have noticed I do feel a little 'wierd' on the drug, then again I'm also taking 5 other meds daily(for both pain and other unrelated problems), so who knows if it's from this.


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,818
    I was taking 10mg / split so it was 5mg 3x day.
    I noticed a big difference after taking it for only two days.
    I did have some stronger effects from other muscle relaxers, but they also were a bit too strong for what I needed.

    Muscle relaxers work quickly and do not generally need a ramp up phase
    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
  • Thanks for the reply. That is not so encouraging though.. Still, I'll ride the prescription out because maybe higher doses will work better for me, seeing as when I'm on full prescription it will be three times as much as I'm on right now.

    What other meds worked better for you?

    Someone mentioned to me dantrium on another post but when I brought it up to my Dr. he hadn't heard of it and prescribed this instead.
  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,818
    edited 04/15/2014 - 2:24 PM
    that I am aware of... (many more that I do not have knowledge about)

    • - Flexeril: Very effective in helping with muscle problems, but for me, the following day was like having a major hangover
      - Methocarbormnal/Rhobaxin: Never found it to be effective
      - Soma: Very effective in muscle relief. Not much room for dosage changes, can be addictive
      - Valium: Effective short term, very addictive
      - Zanaflex: Super effective in muscle help, can be too potent. At times, more than my muscles were relaxed
      - Baclofen: Very effective, lots of room for dosage changes.
    But everyone is different. I am just giving you a run down on the muscle relaxers that I have taken over the past 35 years.
    My doctor was great in that we worked together to find the right medication and the correct dosage. Many times it is a trial and error process.
    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
  • Thanks for the info. I only knew of Soma and Valium before this and am relieved to know that there are many non-narcotic muscle relaxers, hopefully one of the non-narcotic ones works as I've never been on valium but I hated the drowsy effects of soma when i was on it years ago.
  • I have never heard of the drug. Do you know how long it has been around.
  • sandisandi Posts: 6,343
    edited 04/16/2014 - 6:12 AM
    I have been on it since 2005......so it has been around for quite a while.
    As far as the baclofen goes, Dumbledore, make sure to follow the exact prescribing instructions for increasing the dose, and if the time comes to go off it, tapering down as well. Baclofen is NOT a medication that you can just start at a high dose or stop suddenly.
    It does work and it can take a few days to seem like it is helping....it is used primarily to treat spasticity in spinal cord injury and MS , CP , and other muscular spasms that are a bit more difficult to get under control.
    For me I am on both tizanadine and baclofen and have been for many years now to get mine under some type of control.
  • SarahLindeauSarahLindeau Posts: 767
    edited 04/16/2014 - 5:25 PM
    I take flexeril as needed and it's very helpful. I would agree that the next day I'm tired, but I've been living in a fog since my daughter was born so I can handle it. ;)
    2015: Thoracic protrusions C7-T1, T3-4, T6-8
    Dec'13: 360FusionL4-S1 w/bone graft
    2013: 3x2-level disc injections: 12mo surgery postponement
    Dec'12: DiscogramL4-S1
    Sep/Oct'12: Bi-lateral Rhizo AblationsL4- S1
  • Muscle relaxers work best when they are taken regularly........did your doctor prescribe them to be used only when needed? That is a bit unusual.
  • Carl OswaldCCarl Oswald Posts: 66
    edited 04/25/2014 - 5:01 PM
    I just got prescribed for Baclofen.. have taken 4 overall in three days.. I can take up to three per day "as needed".. I have had severe spasmosis, "thousand wasp sting pain", and deep tissue pain in my right leg.. The first one abated the pain and spasms almost immediately, "ahhh" relief... However, it left both legs very weak... Only took one the next day which also helped and didn't seem to weaken my legs as much.. Today, I took one in the morning with hardly any pain or weakness.. and another this afternoon.. with great results.. There seems to be truth in the fact it takes some getting use to it.. I am going to continue the morning / night routine as long as I need it.. if it doesn't leave my legs any weaker than they are now... I am 8 months post lumbar lam / decomp.. and currently diagnosed and suffering with radiculopathy in left L5 / S1 and right S1..
  • Is your doctor tapering you onto the baclofen? You are not supposed to just start taking it twice or three times a day, you have to slowly build up the dose........and whatever you do, do not just stop taking it all at once either........taper up and taper down....
  • I was having acute thoracic spasms and was prescribed Baclofen. After a couple days of not much relief, I had a dystonic reaction and ended up in the E.R. I decided not to take muscle relaxers at all after that.
  • The doctor I saw prescribed one Baclofen at night. I have not had any major difference in my muscle spasms or tightness. I did some research on how it should be titrated up and down. 1 does not seem to be a therapeutic dose, but maybe just something to get me to go away and "feel" like I am being treated. Rather frustrating because I need some relief. I am in a constant state of pain and my muscles are like concrete.
    Try to keep smiling and doing but oh sooooo tired of intense pain battle---tired. I hurt and know it doesn't define me but it sure does change things.
  • It may be that he is doing what he is supposed to do, go slowly up in dose and down in dose too. Are you supposed to return to him? When? Doctors tend to want the patients to give a medication a bit of time to see if it is going to work. This particular muscle relaxer must be taken on a regular basis, every day to see the benefits of it.
  • ynevarAKyynevarAK Posts: 17
    edited 05/09/2014 - 9:45 AM
    This is just for the time being to tide me over until see neurosurgeon (two weeks). I do not return unless directed by the neurosurgeon to follow up with them. Talked to neuro's nurse and he told me to use heat, do more PT (between Thursday afternoon and Tuesday--I have to schedule at least a week out in PT so no way I can make it to more PT before I see him. Called my case manager and she is going to call the neuro and get him to send order for more PT to my primary and see if she approves it so I can go to more PT. Lovely. My case manager didn't think any of the doctors in the clinic would have the experience to treat my conditions. Fed up. It doesn't not help at this dose level :( I will be discussing everything with neuro and regardless my former Primary Care doctor thinks I should get a second opinion and so I.
    Try to keep smiling and doing but oh sooooo tired of intense pain battle---tired. I hurt and know it doesn't define me but it sure does change things.
  • Been on baclofen for a long long time. 20 mg 4 times a day. I came here seeking answers because it seems to me the drug has stopped working. I will speak with my PCP before I do anything. Abruptly stopping is discouraged. Thanks for everyone's comments.
  • jjn101165jjjn101165 Posts: 12
    edited 01/09/2015 - 4:14 PM
    I've been on baclofen since 2007. 20 mg 2x a day. Works well for me.
  • I recently changed pain management doctors, returning to my original PM Dr due to traveling distance. My new (old) doctor took me off of Flexeril which I've been on for about 15 years and took me off of very low dose pain meds (5/325) and put me on Baclofen at 20mg 3x/day. I have a host of issues including Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis Degenerative Disk Disorder and Sciatica. No ramp up was suggested and other than some sedative effects, I've had no adverse effects to starting this dosage without a ramp up.
    However, here is my problem. I've now been taking Baclofen for about 2 weeks now and when I wake up, my pain level in through the roof. I have a persistent 2 inch knot in my lower back where the DDD is the worst and when I was taking the Flexeril, this knot (which has been determined to be due to spasms) was often time's much smaller and my back and leg pain was manageable. I was taken off of the Flexeril for a couple of reasons (the primary reason being that my Insurance no longer covers the medication) but I am in such bad shape right now that I cry for several hours in the morning due to the pain being so intense. I don't know what to do..I don't have another appointment with him for about 6 weeks (unless my insurance company gets my pre-authorization for my SI joints shots done before this, which I highly doubt) and i don't know that I can go another 6 weeks like this. Making an earlier appointment with him is impossible and as I said earlier, I just don't know what to do. Anyone have any suggestions?
  • From what I was told baclofen takes while to work because it needs to build up in your system. 
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