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Muscle relaxants

A number of drugs that have properties of relaxing muscles are sometimes used in management of pain. These include some of the Valium-like drugs called Benzodiazepines and a couple of other drugs.

The problem with these drugs is that although in the short term they can help to reduce muscle spasm, in the longer term they have a considerable number of disadvantages in that they promote a sleep pattern that may if anything increase susceptibility to muscle pain, as well as also being potentially addictive. Some of the benzodiazepines can indeed give rise to chronic pain conditions as part of their withdrawal. For this reason we only very rarely use this group of drugs.

Some other muscle relaxant drugs are occasionally used for particular types of pain, notably Baclofen. These are rarely of use for other than a very few types of pain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Pain Service Website, Gloucestershire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Webmaster Dr J G de Courcy, Consultant in Pain Medicine and Anaesthesia
email: pain.webmaster[at]glos.nhs.uk

Page updated 19/02/2016