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Muscle spasms and Neurontin

KinneyKKinney Posts: 12
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:55 AM in Chronic Pain
I had a unsuccessful cervical foraminotomy at C7 4 months ago.

The upper back spasms between my shoulder blades and upper trap are as bad as ever. No amount of stretching helps.

I was just prescribed Neurontin. Does this drug help with chronic muscle spasms?



  • is generally used for neuropathic pain. There are a number of muscle relaxants that many people take to lessen muscle spasms.

  • Two treatments that have worked for me.
    1. Remedial or sports massage will tease out the tangled muscle fibres and let them relax.
    2. Magnesium will stop the muscle spasms permanently when you have regained your magnesium levels.

    Simple. No drugs needed.
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  • Hi Kinney;

    I also just had my 2nd foraminotomy (opposite side this time) about 6 weeks ago. I so know your pain with the spasms, I have the same problem areas. As sleeprgirl said, Neurontin is prescribed for neuropathy. For muscle relaxants, I've been on flexeril and baclofen (at different times, of course). I had to switch due to the one losing it's effectiveness, as meds tend to do after a while.

    Are you doing any pt? Mine does some light massage work which helps so much, for at least a few hours anyways, but any relief, no matter how short-lived is much appreciated. If you're not able to go for massages, I've also got this little massage thing I got at walmart. It's small, fits in the palm of your hand, and has 4 prongs that vibrate. I use that sometimes and does the trick for a little while as well.

    Are you in pain management? I also get trigger point injections, which also help for a few hours. You can also try a heating pad or hot pack for 20 minutes at a time, several times a day (it's something my pt also suggested with those timelines, but I told her that when I do have the heat on, it's usually for hours. She said that works too, lol). I find the heat also helps loosen up the muscles, that or a hot shower. I haven't been doing either of those 2 things too often though, in this heat wave we've been having. You'd think that with this hot weather we'd be good to go, eh? lol Another good tool is a tens unit. There've been times when I've had mine on all day or night. Also helps with nerve pain for me, too, and works well with the heating pad in conjunction with it. If your insurance doesn't cover tens, I know you can sometimes find a good deal on them on e-bay.

    What has your surgeon said, as the surgery didn't help you? did he give you any sort of plan? If you're not already, I would recommend getting a referral to a pain management clinic.

    Anyways, hope some of that is helpful to you. I hope that your spasms go away and that you find relief soon. Take care;
    APROUD CANADIANveteranButNOTa doctor, my thoughts are my own
  • put all thoughts of surgery, drugs and injections aside for a moment, and just think about the muscles.
    google muscles spasms and magnesium and you will see that a magnesium deficiency-very common-can cause muscle spasms.
    here's a link to get you started:

    mg is the only thing that stopped my muscle spasms and chronic headaches caused by contracting back and neck muscles.
  • Of course, it's always important to have blood tests done to check all levels, but for those of us who don't have magnesium deficiency, we do have to look at other things to help...
    APROUD CANADIANveteranButNOTa doctor, my thoughts are my own
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  • This is not one that a blood test can be used for as most Mg is in the muscles.
    Symptoms are the first sign of deficiency, also estimates of 70-80% of all people being deficient.
    The only path is to start taking it in small doses, then building up and see what happens.

    I can understand your scepticism that such a simple thing could have such dramatic benefits and be outside of the usual medical arena. Sounds like one of those miracle things with magnets, copper, crystals, chanting and so on.
    My chemist was the first one to suggest Mg when i mentioned I was taking Restavit for muscle tension. Bought the powder but didn't notice any benefits.
    Last year my daughter suggested it agin, but this time with a stronger version, magnesium oil. She has a long-term illness herself and researches treatments exhaustively, so I took her advice.
    Within a week i thought I was better, but didn't want to assume anything.
    I increased the dosage and after 2 weeks had definite lessening of muscle pain and headaches. Now, 18 months later, i am completely free of my awful headaches and muscles spasms.
    All thanks to magnesium!
  • peter b said:
    this is not one that a blood test can be used for as most mg is in the muscles
    blood tests can be ordered to check magnesium levels: https://labtestsonline.org/understanding/analytes/magnesium/tab/test

    i get my bloodwork done twice a year, as i do tend to be anemic, and get d and b12 deficiencies. my pcp also orders for magnesium, as i also have an abnormality on my parathyroid.

    muscle cramping and spasms can be caused by many problems, not just magnesium deficiency, such as spinal cord injuries, herniated or protruding discs and nerve damage. the muscles contract in order to protect the instability to an extent that they can get strained and over stretched.

    while it is important to know that deficiencies can be a cause of muscle spasms, it is not the only cause, so taking magnesium will not necessarily help, and in fact can be detrimental if you do not have a deficiency and introduce too much into your system. which is why it's important to talk to your doctor before taking any supplements, and have your blood tested.
    APROUD CANADIANveteranButNOTa doctor, my thoughts are my own
  • Im a paramedic and back numbskull up on this issue. Herbs and vitamins etc are in fact drugs to the body and if you start taking things without at least talking with a pharmacist you will induce other problems. I have ran several cardiac arrythmias and other less severe cases because people took something that is "natural" . Please people be smart and get cleared by your dr before you take ANTHING . If you want magnesium help go take an Epsom salt bath just don't drink your bathwater unless you want diarrhea.:)
  • blood tests aren't valid for anything contained in the tissues. mg is not in the blood in any level to indicate your overall levels.
    read up on it.

    being a paramedic doesn't give you any credence in this topic.
    have you had an emergency ingesting of magnesium to handle?

    neither of you have had any experience with magnesium, and both have closed minds.

    i'd have thought that you come to these forums to learn something new as the medical profession has been unable to help with your problem.
    so why the delight in squashing something that:
    a) has ample evidence of its safety and effectiveness over many years-it is not new.
    b) will probably help the originator of this post with what appears to be a simple bout of muscle spasm, which we all get at one time or another.
    c) has cured my 25+ years of muscle tension pains.

    not all treatments are available through the medical profession.
    by all means run it past the gp, that is what you would normally do, but just expect a blank look as they are just not up to speed on diet deficiencies.

    here's an interesting quote on the relative dangers of vitamins and drugs.

    no one in their right mind, or wrong mind, wants harmful side effects. adverse drug events are routinely accepted and heroically endured, even though, reports the associated press, “more than 1.5 million americans are injured every year by drug errors in hospitals, nursing homes and doctor's offices, a count that doesn't even estimate patients' own medication mix-ups. . . (o)n average, a hospitalized patient is subject to at least one medication error per day.” (4) more than 100,000 patients annually die, just in the usa, from drugs properly prescribed and taken as directed. (5)

    on the other hand, a review of poison control center reports reveals that vitamins have been connected with the deaths of a total of ten people in the united states. . . over the last twenty-three years. (6) the american association of poison control centers (aapcc), which maintains the usa’s national database from 61 poison control centers, alleges the following number of deaths from vitamins in each given year.

    none from magnesium.


  • Sorry that your thread seems to have sparked a little debate between a few members. It happens and please don't let it distract you from your search for information.

    Many years ago the Japanese explored the use of Neurontin as a muscle relaxant. If you type any of that into a search string you can find a few articles to read in regards to it.

    If you think about the fact that many times muscle spasms are caused by nerves that are "unhappy" for one reason or another, then trying to "calm" those nerves could theoretically ease the muscle spasm.

    Hard to really know why your doc prescribed it for you, other than asking him/her specifically.

    We all of us try to find a way to combat spasms, like most medications, what works for one person may not work for another. I hope your doc is able to find a way to help you with your spasms.

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