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Does Gabapentin (Neurontin) Cause Weight Gain?

Gabapentin (Neurontin) is a medication that was developed as a treatment for neuropathic pain and as an adjunct for seizures.  It is also commonly prescribed off-label for conditions such as: restless leg syndrome, hot flashes, migraines, and even anxiety disorders.  In fact, an estimated 9/10 prescriptions for the drug are for off-label conditions.

The drug is frequently used off-label due to the fact that it is considered to have a low potential for abuse and is regarded as non-addictive.  Due to the fact that the drug elicits both analgesic and anticonvulsant effects, it is sometimes preferred by those undergoing various types of surgery.  It reduces preoperative anxiety via its mechanism acting on GABAergic neurotransmission, and provides postoperative pain relief.

Although many people find that Gabapentin is an effective treatment for neuropathic pain, seizures, and various off-label conditions – many people experience unwanted side effects.  One unwanted side effect that has been reported in a small percentage of users is weight gain.  Those that gain significant weight on Gabapentin may be tempted to discontinue as a result of a compromised body-image.

Does Gabapentin (Neurontin) Cause Weight Gain?

Gabapentin is a drug that isn’t associated with clinically significant weight gain.  It is estimated that approximately 3% of all users will experience some form of weight gain.  Most people won’t notice any significant fluctuations in body weight throughout their treatment.  For this reason, Gabapentin is often referred to as a “weight neutral” drug.

That said, there are some studies highlighting the fact that weight gain can occur on Gabapentin, especially when taken at high doses.  In one study of 28 patients taking 3000 mg per day of Gabapentin, 10 patients gained approximately 10% of their bodyweight.  Despite this finding, the majority of patients remained weight neutral, and some even lost weight (3 patients).

While more individuals are likely to gain weight as opposed to lose weight on Gabapentin, most individuals won’t notice any significant change in bodyweight.  However, it is important to understand that many pharmaceutical companies underestimate the potential of their drug to cause weight gain in effort to increase sales.  If you end up gaining weight, it may be difficult to distinguish whether it’s a result of the drug or blatantly poor health choices.

  • Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9263379

How Gabapentin Causes Weight Gain: List of Possibilities

Gabapentin has a poorly understood mechanism of action and weight gain is uncommon.  Since there is some confusion regarding the precise neurophysiological effects of the drug, it is difficult to pinpoint the specific cause of weight gain.  There are many theories in regards to why you may pack on some extra poundage while taking Gabapentin.

  • Appetite increase: Some people notice that Gabapentin significantly increases their appetite. If you’ve been taking Gabapentin and have been feeling hungrier than usual, it may be more than a coincidence.  Certain individuals find that they consume more because the drug is increasing their appetite.  An increased appetite can be difficult to control, and as a result, some people gain weight.
  • Arousal reduction: Gabapentin is known to act on the neurotransmission of GABA in the brain. GABA is considered an inhibitory neurotransmitter that reduces activation of the sympathetic nervous system, and ultimately reduces arousal.  Those feeling reductions in physiological arousal may have a difficult time summoning up the energy to start (or finish) a workout.
  • Drowsiness: The most common side effect of Gabapenin is drowsiness. If you feel drowsy each time you take Gabapentin, you probably won’t feel like moving, let alone working out.  This drowsiness may lead to a significant decrease in physical activity and an increase in sedentary behavior.  The lack of physical activity as a result of drowsiness can result in weight gain, especially if your dietary intake remains the same or increases.
  • Fatigue: Some people report that Gabapentin makes them feel exceptionally sluggish and fatigued. This feeling of fatigue may stem from the most common side effect associated with the drug – drowsiness.  If you feel more fatigued than usual, this may trigger a cascade effect of metabolism slowing and physical inactivity.
  • Food cravings: Various anecdotal reports have claimed that Gabapentin increased their cravings for sugary foods and carbohydrates. If you are craving sugary foods and end up following through with consumption of those foods, weight gain is likely.  Consuming excess sugary foods leads to blood sugar changes and metabolic fluctuations; all making weight gain likely.
  • Hormone levels: Any drug that alters brain chemicals and the nervous system has potential to alter hormone levels. While hormone alterations may not be significant or even common among everyone using Gabapentin, the possibility should not be ruled out.  Hormonal alterations may be significant enough to cause weight gain.
  • Low energy: Those experiencing reductions in energy while taking Gabapentin are not alone. Energy reductions commonly occur when individuals take drugs that act on GABA; Gabapentin regulates two enzymes involved in GABA synthesis.  The altered synthesis may result in drowsiness, fatigue, and ultimately low neurophysiological energy.  This low energy may translate directly to packing on some unwanted baggage.
  • Reduced motivation: Staying motivated on Gabapentin may be difficult as a result of the drug’s effect on neurotransmission and physiology. Its effect upon the synthesis of GABA commonly results in drowsiness characterized by decreased cognitive and physiological arousal.  Reductions in arousal commonly result in motivational deficits and/or amotivational behavior.
  • Slow metabolism: Taking any drug that acts on GABA will likely reduce physiological arousal. The reduction in arousal can actually slow your metabolism, leading you to gain weight even without changing your dietary intake or exercise regimen.  In other words, your diet and exercise routine may be the exact same pre-drug as during treatment, but you may still gain weight – this is thanks to the slowing of your metabolism.
  • Social eating: Many untreated medical conditions can result in social isolation, which means you probably aren’t going out to eat with friends as much. Let’s say you start taking Gabapentin for anxiety or neuropathic pain, and are now able to function better in social situations.  As a result, you may start to go out with friends more frequently, eating bigger portions and making unhealthy choices.
  • Taste improvement: It is possible for some people to subjectively notice a change in taste sensation when taking Gabapentin. While extremely unlikely, it is yet another possible explanation for weight gain.  If food all of a sudden tastes significantly better than it did prior to taking the drug, you’re probably going to eat more.
  • Water retention: Some believe that the drug may increase water retention, thus contributing to a weight increase as a result of retained water. This may result in feeling bloated and to some people, the extra weight via water retention may be blatantly obvious.  Unfortunately, there’s not much that can be done to mitigate this side effect.

Note: It is important to note that weight gain on Gabapentin is largely subject to individual variation.  Certain individuals may experience weight gain as a result of a single factor (e.g. food cravings), while others may gain weight as a result of multiple factors (e.g. slow metabolism, fatigue, and appetite increase).

Factors responsible for weight gain on Gabapentin (Neurontin)

There are many factors that may influence weight gain (or change) on Gabapentin.  The most influential factors include: time span (how long you’ve been taking the drug), the dosage, other medications (drugs often interact), your lifestyle, and genetics.

1. Time Span

For some people, the duration over which they’ve been taking Gabapentin will influence their weight gain.  Some people may notice no weight gain when they first start taking the drug, but may start to pack on some extra baggage after a year.  One study suggests that weight gain most commonly occurs between months 2 and 3 of treatment and stabilizes after 6 to 9 months.

  • Short-term:  Those that have been taking Gabapentin over a short-term may notice some temporary fluctuations in body weight as their physiology acclimates to the drug.  These short-term changes tend to occur during the first few weeks of treatment.  While weight gain may be alarming over the short-term, it’s not necessarily what will occur over the long-term.
  • Long-term: It is common for people to report that they gain weight over the course of long-term treatment with Gabapentin.  Long-term treatment with any drug will alter physiological processes and the body becomes more prone to side effects – including weight gain.  Some people take the drug for years without any weight gain, while others notice incremental increases with each successive year of treatment.

2. Dosage

Some literature indicates that there is no established relationship between dosage and weight gain.  Stating that there is no established relationship between dosage and weight gain does not mean that this applies to everyone.  Some people may notice that they’re significantly more prone to weight gain at higher doses.

Those that gain weight on lower doses may experience an amplified effect of weight increases at higher doses.  Therefore it may be a good idea to take the minimal effective dose to minimize potential weight fluctuations.

3. Other Medications

If you are taking any other medications, it’s important to consider the fact that they may be contributing to the weight gain.  Unless you have been on another drug for a long-term and haven’t noted any weight changes, it’s difficult to conclude that Gabapentin is the culprit for your weight gain.  Even if you don’t think another medication is contributing to your weight gain, it is important to consider the potential of an interaction.

Certain mechanisms of action associated with your other medication(s) may interact with the Gabapentin to promote weight gain.  If you started taking another drug simultaneously with Gabapentin and are gaining weight, consider that it may be caused by the other drug.  You may also want to consider other non-pharmaceutical drugs and alcohol as potential culprits.

4. Lifestyle

It is important to consider the influence of your lifestyle on your bodyweight.  Everyone wants to use the latest drug that they’re taking as a scapegoat excuse for their weight gain.  If you are sedentary for most of the day, don’t make any effort to get physical activity, eat unhealthy foods high in carbohydrates and sugars – you shouldn’t be surprised if you gain weight.

While diet and exercise are important elements to consider as causes of weight gain, you may also want to consider sleeping habits and stress level.  Someone getting a poor night’s sleep consistently and/or an individual with high stress is much more likely to gain weight.  Consider lifestyle influences before assuming that Gabapentin is the problem.

5. Genetics

Much of weight gain on medications is subject to genetics.  Take two people with identically healthy lifestyles and put them on the same dosage of Gabapentin for the same duration.  One of those individuals may end up gaining 10 lbs., while the other may lose 5 lbs.  What would explain the difference between these two individuals? Genetics as well as epigenetics or gene expression in response to the environment.

Fortunately new technology is available like GeneSight to help predict genetic responses to various medications.  Genetics influence our physiological reactions to Gabapentin, thus dictating side effects – including whether we gain weight, remain weight neutral, or even lose weight.

  • Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24308788
  • Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23865122

How much weight will you gain on Gabapentin?

Based on the fact that few studies exist analyzing Gabapentin’s effect on bodyweight, it is difficult to predict how much weight you’ll gain while taking the drug.  One study suggested that those who gain weight will gain between 5% and 10% of their baseline body weight.  In other words, if you weighed 200 lbs. prior to taking Gabapentin and gained weight – you’d probably gain between 10 lbs. and 20 lbs.

In another study published in 2013, the gastroretentive format of Gabapentin was analyzed over the course of 24 weeks.  Patients did report weight gain, but the average weight gain was approximately 1.6 lbs.  This suggests that over the course of 2 years treatment with Gabapentin, weight gain is likely to be minimal among those who do gain weight.

  • Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9263379
  • Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23370075

Does everyone gain weight from Gabapentin?

Certainly not everyone gains weight while taking Gabapentin.  It is estimated that over 90% of individuals taking the drug will experience no significant weight change.  Of the remaining individuals, some will actually experience weight loss.  Clinical trials suggest that less than 3% of all Gabapentin users will gain weight – this means that only a small number of people 3/100 will gain weight.

Some speculate that more people gain weight than what is reported by the drug company and/or clinical documentation.  This drug is considered a predecessor to Lyrica (Pregabalin), which is associated with weight gain.  There is evidence linking Lyrica and weight gain, suggesting that 10% to 20% of users will gain weight.

Since a greater percentage of Lyrica users gain weight, and Gabapentin is similar – some believe that the reports of weight gain on Gabapentin are low-ball estimates.  Despite these theories, the bulk of scientific evidence suggests that most people will not gain significant weight while taking Gabapentin.  In addition, a very small percentage of individuals will actually lose a bit of weight.

  • Source: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16397976

Comparing the therapeutic effect vs. weight gain

Among those who gain weight on Gabapentin, it is important to consider the therapeutic effect of the drug.  Always conduct a cost-benefit analysis and determine the severity of the weight gain compared to the benefit derived from Gabapentin treatment.  If you’re getting significant relief from your neuropathic pain and only gained a few pounds over the course of several months, you probably shouldn’t care too much about the weight gain.

However, if you managed to balloon in weight, gaining a significant amount – you may want to talk to your doctor.  At a certain point, weight gain from any medication may get excessive and should be considered unacceptable.  Gaining a significant amount of weight can put you at risk for other health conditions and may be detrimental to your self-esteem – leading to depression.

If you gained a fair amount of weight, but the drug is very therapeutic for a certain condition – you may feel as if you’re in a difficult situation.  Always talk to a medical professional to assess your options that may include: Gabapentin withdrawal and/or switching to another medication.  Certain people may be able to find a different medication that better suits their physiology.

Did you gain weight taking Gabapentin?

If you ended up gaining weight while taking Gabapentin, be sure to share a comment below with some details.  Discuss how long you took Gabapentin, the dosage, as well as any other medications you were taking simultaneously that may have caused you to gain weight.  Share why you believe the drug caused you to gain weight (e.g. drowsiness, food cravings, etc.).

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{ 140 comments… add one }
  • Danni June 6, 2016, 12:23 pm

    I’m seriously struggling to lose the two stone I’ve put on since starting gabapentin two years ago. It’s impossible and is making me very depressed. I don’t think I can come off it due to my health conditions but I can’t carry on like this.

  • George June 4, 2016, 4:19 pm

    Now in my fifth year of progressive idiopathic peripheral neuropathy, my doctor prescribed Gabapentin; 300 mg every 8 hours (twice a day) and 600 mg at bed time. This prescribed treatment did relieve some of the paresthesia. After two months, with no change in lifestyle, physical activity or food consumption, I have gained approx. 5% of my former body weight. That weight gain places me in the “Overweight” BMI category.

  • CWhite May 24, 2016, 5:02 am

    I’ve been taking 300 mg t.i.d. for approx one month to help with pain from an extensive spinal surgery. I wasn’t sure at first what was causing my weight gain but finally attribute it to the gabapentin since nothing else had changed. I gained ten pounds in four weeks. I’ve been a consistent 135 lbs for years. Dieting and exercise was not helping. I was actually continuing to gain at the rate of about 2 lbs a week. This is substantial.

  • alice May 16, 2016, 10:03 pm

    I have Polycythemia Vera and gabapentin has been the only thing that has controlled the itching and stabbing that is very intense. Within 1-2 months I rapidly gained 15 pounds and it has stayed with me. I am on a high dose of 800mg 4x daily. I feel it has increased my appetite and lowered my motivation. The pain without the drug is too much to stop it, but the weight gain and lowered motivation is life altering.

  • jayne May 15, 2016, 2:03 am

    I started it Feb. 3rd and have gained 13 lbs! I’m not small to begin with so this is not good. I’m way hungrier and crave sugary foods. Have no motivation whatsoever. This was to treat my muscle and all over pain. I take it with flexeril and trazodone.

  • Tammy May 11, 2016, 9:30 pm

    I was suffering from severe hemiplegic migraines for months on Topamax so they switched me to 300 mg of Gabapentin 3 times/day. I have gained at least 20 lbs and reduced my intake to 1200 calories and increased my exercise to 2-3 miles/day brisk walking. I’ve gone from a size 10-16! I’m on 100 mg lasix and still hold a lot of weight in my legs!

    I am miserable with the weight gain but without the gabapentin I was between a walker & a wheelchair! People keep saying “but you feel better…just feel better weighing more. Wouldn’t you rather be free of the headaches?” Well of course I would but… isn’t there something else?

    SOO frustrated! Doctors give you the “eat healthy and exercise” as a solution… as if I’m not already doing that! It’s nice to not be alone in the documented “3%.” I think they’re under-reporting considerably!

    • Danni June 6, 2016, 12:28 pm

      I’m also eating 1200 calories a day but the weights not shifting. I’m unable to exercise due to my condition but I’ve always been around 9-10 stone but have gone up to just over 13 since I started taking it two years ago. I agree they must be under reporting, so many people seem to have the same issue. It’s driving me crazy.. I’m do depressed being this big. It’s giving me anxiety too, I think people are looking at me and hate how I look in clothes! What are we meant to do?

  • Jennifer May 7, 2016, 12:28 pm

    I have been on Gabapentin for a year and a half. My doctor started me on 300 milligrams 3 times a day. Now I’m on 600 milligrams in the morning 300 milligrams in the afternoon and 600 milligrams at bedtime. Before I started on Gabapentin I weighed 120 pounds and now I weigh 162 pounds. I’m 5 feet 2 inches and that’s a lot to gain.

    I was in a size 2 now I’m in a size 14. Plus my hair has fallen out and now I’m bald and need to wear a wig and my sex drive is nonexistent. I’m on Gabapentin for my epilepsy I have both gran maul and petite seizures and also for my anxiety. I now have low self-esteem issues plus depression. I go to the gym 5 times a week and walk 2 miles a day.

    I watch what I eat and still gaining weight. My doctor is refusing to change me onto a new drug and actually said that I’m not exercising enough. I looked at her like she was crazy. I just wanted to share my experience with you all and hopefully by you reading this helps you. I wish you all the best.

    • Susan May 30, 2016, 11:55 am

      Thank you for your comment. I too have gained about 10 pounds since taking gabapentin 300 every night at bedtime for over a year. It definitely helps me sleep, but the weight gain is not a good thing, so I’m going to taper off it.

  • Shelly May 6, 2016, 5:54 pm

    I have been on Gabapentin off an on 3 times over the last 10 years, to treat my Trigeminal Neuralgia. The first time, I gained at least 25 lbs over a period of 3 months. The second time was about 10 lbs over 2 months. I am now taking it again, and have gained about 10 lbs over 6 & 1/2 weeks. It’s terrible. I am going to slowly wean myself off. I never realized that this drug causes weight gain until this time – it’s awful!

  • Cathy April 29, 2016, 3:23 pm

    I was 180 to 198… taking 1800 at night and 900 during the day. I could never get below 178… no matter how many diet pills I tried, diet changes. NOTHING worked – till I stopped the 1800 at night. My Dr took me off the 1800. I took myself off of the 900. I LOST 10 pounds. I am a bit stiff but with my self image restored! This worked for me, but may not for others.

  • Linda April 25, 2016, 10:42 pm

    My Doctor suggested me trying Gabapentin in lieu of my Lyrica. I went from 146 pounds to 169 pounds in 6 months. I told my Doctor I wanted to go back on Lyrica as I only gained 5 pounds on this! I take Lyrica for my Fibromyalgia. My Doctor denied the fact that the weight was gained by taking Gabapentin but she weaned me off the 1800 mg a day back to my Lyrica.

    P.S. I’m still trying to lose the last 10 pounds. I’m 5’7″ and I am a very active person. I walk everyday and during the hot months, I’m in the pool swimming along with my early morning walks and I don’t eat red meat. I eat a lot of fruits and veggies!

  • Kate April 24, 2016, 4:30 pm

    I’ve been on 800mg 4 x a day for almost a year now. My weight before Gabapentin was 125lb now I am up to 138lb, height 5 foot tall. I never once ate snacks or sugar. Since taking Gabapentin, I cannot get enough sugary foods. I eat a lot of fruits and raw vegetables during the day, always have, still crave sugary foods.

  • Lori B April 21, 2016, 5:38 pm

    I too have gained unexplained 15lbs taking 900mgs 2x/day of gabapentin. I can walk and stand up straight now but I am also going to planet fitness 3x/week to get core muscles stronger (this is my last ditch chance at not hurting as my MD says there is nothing they dare do as my lower back has too many issues with stenosis, scoliosis, degenerative disks).

    Never in my life have I biked 6 miles in 30 mins, worked on muscle “machines”. And I still have gained this weight. I can’t even fit into my “fat” clothes. I have had knee replacements, and now shoulder and cervical issues but am single and care for my home, a summer cottage, have 2 small animals, work as a nurse so I have had to work hard to do all that.

    I can’t afford to be sedentary but it takes all the energy I have-no energy to have any “fun”. Am also on antidepressants/bipolar, hormones, bladder and reflux meds, vit. B/ D. Multi vit, fish oil. But I have been on them for a long time. The GABA is new to my meds. And I think it explains my weight gain.

    I was thinking my weight gain had to do with turning 60. After reading all these comments I think I will start weaning off gaba and see if the pain comes back… My hope is all that exercise will keep me out of pain, standing up straight and walking. Thanks everyone for your comments.

  • Doreen Birkholz April 18, 2016, 8:23 pm

    Been taking 300 mg per day, sometimes 600 for the past 6 months. I have gained 10 lbs and am going off it.

  • Linda April 16, 2016, 5:19 am

    I have been on 300 mg gabapentin for pain from excessive scar tissue that is wrapped around organs. Have gained 25#. Always feel bloated and am totally miserable with my weight. I thought it was my age. Does anyone know if you can go off this cold turkey? I’ve done this before with other meds and made it through withdrawals but can’t find out anything on this.

  • Jay V. April 10, 2016, 5:45 am

    I’ve been on Gabapentin for 2.5 years due to chronic pain and the suspicion that I could have fibromyalgia, but I haven’t been officially diagnosed. I take two 300mg per day. I love that I’m now able to be on my feet for much longer. My joints aren’t randomly swelling up like they used to before gabapentin. However, I always feel drowsy.

    My neurologist said it shouldn’t last, but I’ve increased my hours of sleeping per night, and I still feel drowsy. I didn’t go to my GP for a few years, and I didn’t weigh myself much, so it’s hard to say how much weight I’ve gained, but I would estimate I’ve gained 5 pounds. Also, I’ve had a strong craving for carbs over the past year or so, and I never had cravings for anything when I was younger.

    Just lately I’ve realized that I’ve just become overweight according to the BMI, so I’m starting a major lifestyle change in my diet and exercise routines. But I have to be careful. If I don’t eat enough, I become lightheaded very quickly, and I didn’t experience this light-headedness before gabapentin. Also, walking is my only form of exercise since I also have hydrocephalus and a brain shunt, and I have encountered problems with other forms of exercise.

    So far, it feels like the only way for me to lose weight is if I eat a normal fulfilling meal during the day, a light meal at night, and ignore my hunger pangs right before I go to bed. I know this isn’t the healthiest option, but I’m still figuring this out. I’m starting my cutting down on processed foods and eating more vegetables, so I know that’s a good choice.

  • Diane April 9, 2016, 12:19 pm

    I have been on gabapentin for 10 months and have put on 15lbs. All this whilst STILL following a healthy eating plan on Slimming world. I had previously lost almost 80lbs in an effort to improve my health and help with hot flashes and fibromyalgia which cause me to have sleepless nights. The 600mg of medication taken at night helped with the pain and hot flashes, but I feel bloated with fluid retention and totally lethargic.

    I’m craving more carbs and chocolate and I am surprised that I have only gained 15lbs… but as I said, I am still following a healthier eating regime. I’ve decided to stop taking it and look for another way. No idea what yet, but I don’t need to add weight-related depression into the mix!

  • Jay March 22, 2016, 12:36 pm

    I’ve been on Gabapentin for 5 months. For most of that time it was 600 milligrams per day. About a month ago I switched to 800 milligrams per day and I am up 2 dress sizes and about 20 pounds and I have not at all changed my eating habits other than to cut back on food intake to the bare minimum and my exercise level is the same.

    I regret ever going on this drug and am at this time going off because the weight gain has now grown so very uncomfortable that I just can’t take it. I would rather suffer my RLS than to take this drug or any normally used in this class. All affect brain chemistry and all can cause weight gain. Please Pharma – can you do better than this? Our health matters!

  • Rob March 17, 2016, 4:16 pm

    I am a member of the US Army and exercise regularly to stay fit. I started taking Gabapentin 7 months ago due to pain associated with cervical spine injury. In spite of continuing with a good exercise regimen and maintaining a good diet, I have gained 10 lbs and over an inch on my waist. I have spoken with my doctor and others, and I believe the occurrence of weight gain to be higher than reported in the article.

    • Jennifer July 28, 2016, 3:35 am

      Absolutely agree with you. Drug manufacturers are not going to tell the public the REAL side effects their drug causes. They don’t make great money that way. I wouldn’t doubt if the weight gain effects 30 to 40% of users. There is no way the people having this problem is anywhere near 3%.

  • Tmlm March 14, 2016, 5:01 am

    Oh I knew it. My shrink said it’s what I’m eating. I barely eat, I hardly ever eat junk. I have been on Gabapentin for a few years. Spinal surgeries, degenerative disk diseases, fibro, yada yada yada. I’ve gained 25 lbs. I look swollen. No matter what I do, it doesn’t change my weight. I don’t understand why someone can’t make a nerve pain med that doesn’t have weight gain as a side effect.

    I, like the majority of you, hurt worse from the extra weight, then they up the meds… It’s a vicious circle. Wish there was some other meds to help us. I know Gabapentin works good, but the tradeoff sucks. I’m thinking of easing myself off of it. I can’t take feeling swollen… It’s uncomfortable, depressing, and hurts my back more. That’s 3 against 1…screw this med.

  • Cynthia G March 12, 2016, 4:29 pm

    I have been on this drug for several years post spinal fusion L4-5. I stopped for two years but RLS returned and resumed. I take 100mg twice a day as needed for polyarthritis. I have RA and when it’s active I take more. I take 600mg at night or I cannot sleep through the night, and sleep is necessary for healing. I do have edema from this drug and gained a few extra pounds too.

    However, I maintain a low carb diet and do not eat heavy meals after 3:00 pm. I crave sweets and carbs, so limit my intake to early in the day. I am 69 yrs old, had 18 surgeries in twenty years for my arthritis and was on every pain med there was available. I weaned myself off of all medications two years ago, including chemo drug, Rituxan, prescribed for my RA. My only saving grace is GABApentin.

    However, I agree, it does cause weight gain, but you can control it. I walk two miles a day, in all weather conditions. My Rheumatolgist said the best therapy for me is to KEEP MOVING, and stay away from anymore surgeries. It’s heartbreaking for me to read a lot of your posts, but keeping your. I don’t positive and stopping your pain meds, keep moving and mindful of the consequences of taking too much Gabapentin is not helping your mind either.

    Although they say it is not addictive, I disagree, it works on your neurotransmitters to shut down the nerve pain, so it has to be somewhat addictive. People our age have to be more careful when taking larger doses, so my personal advice is lower your dosage gradually to sustain your health. Eat lots of fresh fruits and veggies, drink a smoothie in the morning, to boost your natural sugars, omit white flour from your diet and WALK daily, keep a diary of your progress and be nice to yourself.

    It will get better, but don’t get dependent on this drug or any others, they are harmful. Since I follow this plan, I feel 100% better, and sleep through the night! Food is not your enemy, only the wrong foods. I love sweets and carbs, but trained my brain to eat them early in the day, and salads and fruits in the evening. Good luck my friends and stay mentally healthy as well.

    • Rebecca May 27, 2016, 10:25 pm

      Hi my friend. Good helpful hints. I have been following your regimen with no luck. I am 5 8″ 135 pounds. Very athletic and in shape. Since being on neurontin I have gained 15 pounds, lost it had to go back on it now taking the higher doses 3600 now I am up to 160 and climbing. I know it is the drug but with out it I won’t sleep.

      What they don’t warn you about is the coming off the drug too. How uncomfortable I feel trying to lower the dose. I won’t die without the neurontin just feel like I am without using the word withdrawal. Can you tell me how you were able to stop taking it or lowering it? Also have you ever had tingling in your skin anywhere or all over your body when lowering the dose?

  • Dana Whittaker March 10, 2016, 3:17 am

    I started taking Gabapentin 8 months ago, for migraines. I have gained 10 lbs. I am changing to Topamax.

  • Simie February 27, 2016, 6:54 am

    Hi, I have been on neurontin for about a week now and although I suffer from time to time with binge eating, this past week has been a nightmare. Aside from being super tired I’ve been having a never ending appetite and I’ve put on about 8-10 lbs this week from eating so much. It may have also made my depression come back so as per my doctor I am stopping it.

  • Cheryl rose February 24, 2016, 4:32 pm

    Started Gaba in Aug 2015, I gained 10 lbs in 3 weeks. Prior to that I had been stable at 155 for several years. I am on 1200mg in 3 divided doses. I refuse to go higher. Have gained another 10 lbs since the initial weight gain. All of a sudden BP up and blood sugar up as well. Not good, but can’t get off the Gaba.

  • Gail February 22, 2016, 4:37 pm

    I have been on gabapentin for over a month, starting at 200mg, then taking 300mg for hot flashes. Two weeks ago I started Nutrisystem. Sadly, I have not only not lost any weight but gained 2 & 1/2 pounds in the two weeks. I am now weaning myself off of it and will take the hot flashes. Pretty discouraging situation.

  • Steven February 16, 2016, 7:51 am

    I am 64 years old and male and I’ve been on 2700mg of gabapentin as result of an arm injury that I can’t shake off (I actually walked into a door frame whilst cleaning the house). This is an injury to an already arm damaged with ulnar nerve problems. I could manage the pain during the day but not at night when subconsciously I would turn on my side and wake up with lots of pain.

    My exercise regime remains the same as does my diet. My weight is 177lbs and is pretty steady. However, having been on gabapentin for around 2 weeks my weight is gradually increasing. The only difference I have is this drug and my weight has increased by 3 lbs. It’s something I need to keep an eye but fortunately for me I only see the taking of gabapentin as a short term measure for a couple of months maximum.

    Long term I dread to think how much weight I would put on. My feelings go out to all of you on this drug long term.

  • sandra February 8, 2016, 5:07 pm

    I am 5’1″ inches tall and I have gained 40lbs in the year and a half I have been on this drug. And the DR told me the gabapentin would not cause weight gain. He is wrong.

    • Leslie March 9, 2016, 11:25 am

      I’m also 5’1 and have gained 35 lbs in one year being on this med.

  • Donna February 1, 2016, 3:10 pm

    Has anyone lost the weight after stopping Gabapentin? If so, how long did it take before you lost the weight? Thank you for your help.

    • GerriB June 5, 2016, 5:43 pm

      I gained 20# in 2 months. Stopped the drug and it took me 10 months of dieting and exercising to get it off.

    • Danni June 6, 2016, 12:21 pm

      Hi, I’ve been dieting strictly for two weeks and haven’t lost a single pound. I could seriously cry. I’ve been taking gabapentin for two years and have put on about 2 stone. My weight is really causing me to feel depressed and I’m seriously considering coming off it. But what are the alternates?

  • Laurelle January 31, 2016, 6:16 am

    Oh my goodness!! I am so very glad I found this thread. I started gabapentin 6 years ago for chronic nerve pain in my legs and at the time it was an answer to prayer for the pain. However I started slowly gaining weight…2 months ago the chemist ran out of gabapentin and so the doctor prescribed me lyrics, no mention of side effect. My weight has skyrocketed.

    I weigh far more than I did at full term pregnancy and can’t even get into clothes I bought only 6 weeks ago, despite eating sensibly and light exercise (have been drowsy and tired too so less keen to exercise). I was blaming work, stress, agin (I’m 43) but I have had enough. I’m going to my doctor to get off this tomorrow!!! Ther must be something better. Has anyone stopped it and been able to lose the weight they gained?

  • Andreas Perrone January 28, 2016, 3:29 am

    I am so glad to have found this page. I have been on Gabapentin for 2 years for chronic nerve problems in my legs. I have gained 16 pounds. I can’t wait to tell my wife it’s caused by the meds and not the 12 Krispy Kreme doughnuts I eat each night.

    • Matt January 30, 2016, 12:39 pm

      😅

  • KCPeter January 26, 2016, 4:19 pm

    I have been taking Gabapentin for about seven years (initially it was prescribed in Jan. 2010). I am now nearly 67 yrs. old, so I began taking the drug when I was almost 61. It was prescribed for neuropathic pain (non-diabetic related), resulting from a scar tissue build- up at L5-S1 following back surgery in 1999. I had mild-to-moderate scoliosis and spinal stenosis. Initially, I took 800 mg of Gabapentin twice daily (BID).

    That same dosage level was increased to three times daily (TID) following a mild relapse in my pain. At the time the frequency was increased to TID, Tramadol was added. I got wonderful pain relief with the Gabapentin-Tramadol combination until late in 2014, since Tramadol had been reclassified and my PCP decided to eliminate the Tramadol and increase my Gabapentin dosage to four times daily (3200 mg daily).

    Most days, I only take the drug three times–when I get up (6:30 ish), then again at 11 AM, at 3 PM and, if needed, at 7 PM but often I do not take the 7 PM dosage. I began to gain weight BEFORE the Tramadol was eliminated but seriously gained weight a few months after the dosage had been increased to 3200 mg daily (i.e., in early-to-mid 2015). In Jan. 2010, when I began taking Gabapentin, I weighed about 232–I am 6’3″ and had weighed that amount for several years, rarely fluctuating.

    In summer 2011, I dieted, lost weight, and was down to 218 but I regained it all by the following spring 2012 when I weighed 232 again. One year later (spring 2013), I weighed the same but in the subsequent two years, I ballooned up to 272 by the summer of 2015. I dieted and lost about 13 lbs. (down to 259 ish) by last fall 2015 which is what I now weigh (Jan. 2016). As I said, I am 67 yrs. old and it is very hard to lose weight.

    I have enrolled in a Silver Sneakers program at my local YMCA where I just began taking yoga and low impact cardio classes for Active Older Adults. My PCP has recommended that I try a customized herbal blend to replace (over time) the Gabapentin, specifically due to my weight gain. I have never reported this problem to him as a side effect; he offered the option to me and I agreed to try it for three months.

    By the way, my LDL, HDL, triglycerides, and other blood work results are all within expected (normal) ranges. My BP is high (138/81 ish) but to date, I have not been prescribed any drugs for my BP. The goal is now to try to titrate off Gabapentin entirely, lose weight and also (most importantly) not experience any intolerable neuropathic pain symptoms. We’ll see how things go, although after reading the extensive list of possible reasons for weight gain on Gabapentin, I am optimistic.

    I have experienced fatigue (drowsiness), cravings for complex carbs and sugary treats, and low energy while on Gabapentin but I am also pretty sedentary. I am one of those relatively rare “patients” who has taken high dosages (2400-3200 mg. per day) over a long period of time (about 6 yrs.) so, if weight gain is a possible side effect of Gabapentin, I am a good candidate.

    I am hoping that lifestyle changes (i.e., watching my weight & eating more healthily + working out at the YMCA 4-5 times a week) in addition to shifting to a customized herbal compound to replace the Gabapentin, will help me turn the corner on this weight gain problem.

    • Laurelle January 31, 2016, 6:17 am

      Can I please ask where you went for a herbal treatment? I’d like to do the same.

    • Beverly July 7, 2016, 10:10 am

      Over 65 years of age 150/90 is now considered just the beginning of high B/P. Lower your salt intake and caffeine levels. If you drink soft drinks such as coke, it is high in caffeine and sodium. Also eat less processed food, such as lunch meats. Start being a label reader, you will be surprised how many foods are high in sodium levels. Keep in mind the ingredients are listed with the highest amounts first.

  • Lori Laws January 24, 2016, 3:33 am

    Glad I found these comments! I knew I couldn’t be alone in this. I was taking 300 mg gabapentin at bedtime for 8 months and gained 20 lbs and pretty severe edema. I stopped this drug a little over 1 week ago and am noticing weight loss. The edema is still there, but I am hoping it will go away with time.

    • Wes June 21, 2016, 5:08 pm

      Very similar story here, I KNEW I couldn’t be the only one questioning my weight gain. I was taking 600mg (300 x 2) Gabapentin for about 4 months and gained 20 pounds. While my nerve pain in my feet improved significantly (not completely), and that allowed me to get back to exercising 3x per week, I still gained all this weight. I couldn’t understand this rather backwards relationship: no exercise = no significant weight gain vs. more exercise, less pain = significant weight gain (??).

      Last week I reduced my dosage to 300mg per day and have lost 3 pounds in a week with all other factors being neutral. There’s no doubt in my mind I’m in the 3% group but if I can manage my nerve pain @300mg I’m going to do it and hopefully lose all the weight I gained.

  • Alfelia Lofton January 13, 2016, 12:25 pm

    My condition is Peripheral Neuropathy – my nerves are badly damage. I have been taking Gabapentin – 400MG’s since 2009. When I first starting taking the medication I was a size 6. Now it’s 2016, and I’m darn near a size “20”. I also have to take Folic Acid, Vitamin-B1, Cyclobenzaprine and (vitamin-D-50,000 IU D2. -but not everyday). I noticed the extreme weight gain and I told my doctor, so we decided to change the gabapentin to a new drug.

    When I read the ingredients for the new drug, which I don’t have the name of it at this time. I’m refusing to take because of the ingredients, I would be “DEAD BEFORE SUN DOWN”. I have to take 400mg 6-tablets daily = 2,400mg’s daily. I don’t sleep well and I have server muscle cramps. I am blowing up like a hippo… I need some “help”.

  • Ayr December 21, 2015, 8:28 pm

    I was prescribed 300 mg 3x per day of Gabapentin post total hip replacement plus aspirin, vitamin d3, Percocet, zanaflex, iron, and meloxicam for swelling. I have been on all of these medications at some point over the years prior to surgery with the exception of GABApentin without any weight gain. I weighed in presurgery at 203 lbs had the mandatory requirement of 2 day stay in hospital which I was given pretty much the regiment above.

    I came home at 219 lbs with considerable edema on the lower extremities. I had ditched the walker on my 2nd day home walked a mile that day. The 2nd day I rode 30 min on my spin bike. I could go on and on about activity yet I gained another 5 lbs and increased edema. All this with decreased caloric intake. I discontinued Gabapentin today.

  • freddie golphin December 21, 2015, 3:15 am

    I have been on gabapentin 300 mg for 3 months. I take it every eight hours. My weight was 210 lbs before I started this drug, now I am at 240 lbs and gaining each week. This is not good for me.

  • Lyne December 17, 2015, 11:02 am

    Hi everyone! Just so we are clear, I would not be able to function without the use of Gabapentin and Tegretol. Two years ago, I was diagnosed with Trigeminal Neuralgia. So, I have been using Gabapentin and Tegretol now for that amount of time. Dosage are 2700mg daily of GABA and 800mg daily of Tegretol. That being said, these meds have increased my appetite, my food cravings, my fatigue, and my lifestyle.

    I have gained 10% of my body weight. The weight gain stabilized after about a year. I now manage it (or it manages me?). Five years ago, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia. I have been taking Cymbalta since then with no weight gain. At least before I was diagnosed with TN. Hope it helps a little. -Lyne

  • Caleydog December 15, 2015, 3:11 pm

    Cyn: A lot of us understand what you’re going thru. I’ ve been on/done it all for back and other problems: epidurals, ablations, accupuncture, diazepam, baclofen, lyrica, oxy, fentynal and more. Nothing works for back problems, drop foot and odd seizures in legs which is my primary complaint as of late. Prelim. diagnosis was restless leg syndrome, but now my legs seize so badly from sundown to dawn that I have to be restrained at night.

    Yet another new doctor decided to put me on gabapentin two weeks ago. On Lyrica I retained water over two years. Came off it and dropped 40 pounds in 6 weeks. Freaked me out. (Male, 59) Now I’m ‘titered up’ on the Gabapentin from 100 mg/day to 1500 and gained 10 pounds in two weeks. Doc wants me to up it to 3000 and I’m terrified I’ll gain back the 40 lbs, plus more.

    Docs don’t tell patients about potential weight gain because it’s a small subset of users who experience this side effect. Since ratio of gainers to non-gainers is 3:100, docs think we’re malingering about weight gain… but someone has to be in that 3%. Lucky us, eh? As a silly side note about unlikely side effects… I was on ropinerole (Requip) for several years as one of the meds for the RLS.

    After about a year on it, I developed a problem exactly the opposite of what the “little blue pill” is designed to treat, e.g., ED. Odd for a man my age to be ‘ready to go’ four, five, six times a day. So embarrassing I had to stop going out in public any time after 6 pm when I took my pill. This response is noted in literature as “not significant.” I told my neuro who prescribed it; she said that side effect was absolutely impossible and referred me to a psychiatrist who also said impossible; as did my internist and sleep specialist.

    Finally had my annual visit to the urologist. Told him and he said, “Oh, I have dozens of male patients who complain about that. Either learn to live with it or stop the medication.” I opted for latter, which is why I’m now on Gabapentin. It’s terribly frustrating that docs brush off so-called rare side effects, but the literature and their experience tells them certain things just don’t happen on certain drugs when WE know they do. Good luck and know you’re not alone or crazy.

  • Karen Rosic Privett December 2, 2015, 6:38 am

    I am on 2400 mg of gabapentin a day. I have been on it for 6 months. 5’3″ and weighed 130 pounds prior to starting the medication. I have gained 30 pounds. There can’t be any other reason for the weight gain. NOTHING has changed in my lifestyle other then starting this medication. I took it about 6 years ago 3200 mgs a day and I gained 50 pounds so I quit taking it and lost all the weight.

    I will probably quit taking it again for this reason. I have had 4 back surgeries and have spondylolysthesis and arachnoiditis. Its does help but the discomfort of this extra weight is almost as bad as pain. so anyone who says it doesn’t cause weight gain obviously hasn’t taken it. I know for a fact it causes excessive weight gain.

    When your entire life you maintained the same weight and the only time you gain is the 2 times you have taken this medication then you definitely know that is what is causing it. It doesn’t make me hungry and I don’t eat any different then I did before so YES it does cause weight gain!!!

  • Sally November 21, 2015, 2:18 pm

    My life partner was on 3600 mg/day for the last 2 or 3 years of her life. She was on several drugs, so as she gained weight we didn’t blame the gabapentin – but she did gain a LOT. Her injuries ruled out any real exercise; she was quite sedentary. Other side effects (lack of energy or motivation or interest in anything) made me hate gabapentin.

    This summer, my doctor prescribed it for me for anxiety – ONLY 100 mg, extremely low dose at first – I had been successfully losing a lot of weight and maintaining a size 12 (age 72, 5’6″) but I noticed the weight gain had stopped, and I was gaining a few pounds. Then my doctor increased the dose to help with sleeplessness – a really big problem for me – and I started taking 300 mg at bedtime, and supposed to increase to 600 next week.

    But suddenly my weight is just zooming up, like a pound every day. That’s what brought me to this website. Wow. I don’t know what I’m going to do. When you’ve struggled so hard and actually started to succeed with weight loss, this is awful. But so is sleeplessness.

  • Jill November 20, 2015, 10:44 am

    I have gained 14 lbs since January when I started taking the drug. It a very low dose but my body is super sensitive. It makes me drowsy, I think I crave bad foods for energy. I also think it’s severely bloating me. I went from a size 4-8! I still exercise and am active. I also take spironolactone every day 50-100 milligrams. This is known to decrease appetite. I’ve taken this for years and never gained weight on it.

  • Jill November 13, 2015, 1:53 am

    Same with me. Gabapentin definitely causes weight gain! Yet, when you live with unbearable, permanent nerve damage pain, you must weigh your options. Gabapentin does help with pain, mildly though it may be, so…, for me, the option of stopping Gabapentin is more disturbing than the weight gain! Very frustrating.

  • Carter October 20, 2015, 12:55 am

    I’m so glad I found this site and these posts!! My story: All but 1 disc is bulging to some extent, a couple are blown, 1 compression fracture, bone spurs and spondylosis, one or two other things I can’t think of right now (as far as my spine is concerned, it’s hard to remember it all) and Fibromyalgia. I’m against drugs, at one point was taking 12. I quit them all.

    When my back got so bad I couldn’t function I had to go back. I’m getting a pain pump next month so am starting on my own a taper of morphine, flexeril and gabapentin because I can’t take being so fat any more. I’ve always struggled with my weight, and was on my way to being diabetic. With light exercise and a change of diet I lost 60lbs. After a year on these drugs I’ve gained 40 of it back. Talk about depressing! And the carb cravings!!

    Whether I resist or not seems to not make a difference. I’ve been taking 1800mg of the gabapentin per day for a little over a year now and it’s not worth it. I’ve decided that I’d rather have the pain. More fat causes more pain and damage to the spine anyway, so what the hell am I doing?! My Dr told me to wait until I get my pump next month, but if I can get some weight back off before then I reason that it will make the surgery and recovery that much easier. I take a total of 6 300mg gabapentin a day, so I’m going to try dropping 1 pill every few days.

  • Roz October 19, 2015, 12:05 am

    I have sciatica and stenosis. Suffering lots of pain these last 10 months. Nothing works. As of the last 7 days I am on Gabapentin 4 x 300 mg. a day. It has taken more then a month of small amounts to work up to 1200. It too hasn’t helped reduce the pain. some days I am so angry at my change of life style and other days I cry. I have been told that I would need to be on it for a long time before I feel better. In the meanwhile I have put on 10 lbs. Ugh! I weigh 165 lbs. I don’t need to gain more. I have been watching myself carefully, but it hasn’t helped. I won’t give up. I can’t afford to gain weight and have debilitating pain too!

  • TG October 4, 2015, 9:27 am

    I’ve been given gabapentin to reduce sciatic pain caused by a herniated disc. Currently, I’m taking 400mg a day, which I gather is a low dose. I’ve come looking for information here because I’ve abruptly started craving chocolate. I don’t ordinarily even like chocolate, so it’s odd to be driven to consume it. At times it’s hard to think about anything except getting more chocolate. I’m diabetic so having to fight this non-stop, very powerful urge to eat something that I don’t like poses a very real health problem.

    I’m suspecting gabapentin to be the cause not only because the cravings started when the daily dose moved from 200mg to 300mg but because I had similarly strong cravings for carbs (though not chocolate specifically) earlier in my life when I was prescribed imipramine for depression. Things got quite crazy. For the only time in my life, I got out of bed on a work night at 2 am and went looking for a place, any place, that sold food. Bread or cake – I had to have it. As the imipramine was phased out, the cravings faded away, and I haven’t had anything like then until now.

    I’d like to stay on the gabapentin because it has helped with what was hellish pain, but the cravings at their current level are difficult to endure. They’re not just obsessive but kind of desperate — a feeling that my life is about to end because I’m not eating chocolate. Yes, I know that’s absurd but reason just talks to itself while desperation tries to drag me toward the door. It’s 5:28 am here now on a Sunday. Must be someplace open selling chocolate! NOW. NOW. NOW. How many weeks can I anchor my butt and not obey?

    An irony: The sciatic pain was keeping me from sleeping more than 90 minutes at a time and the lack of deep sleep was making me batty. Now, with the gabapentin, the pain is less and I can sleep. I can sleep about 2 hours, in fact, before waking up craving chocolate. I’ve gained 30 minutes there, but when the pain woke me after 90 minutes I could usually go back to sleep in an hour or two. Now I’m up the rest of the night fighting off the urge to get chocolate. It is hard to see this as progress.

    The diabetes aside, if I eat as much chocolate as I’m craving, I’ll weigh a great deal more in just a couple of months.

  • Thomas Anderson September 30, 2015, 11:17 am

    I’ve been taking gabapentin for 9 months and have already gained 2 stone. I was wondering if losing weight gained with taking this drug will be harder to lose???

    • Maggie November 14, 2016, 4:04 pm

      I was taking 1200 mg per day for nerve pain following hand surgery. I put on about 10 pounds and got frustrated so I tapered off at the end of one month. The weight came off in about three days. I saw someone recommend Topamax and a friend of mine has as well so I’m going to look into that one.

  • Gaynor September 18, 2015, 8:19 pm

    I have been on just 1 tablet in the evening for the last 3-4 wks and couldn’t figure out why I was gaining weight whilst dieting for my holidays. I put on at least 8 lb and felt bloated all the time. This has caused me to feel extremely depressed. I have poly osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia if anything I feel that the side effects on my body/mind do not benefit me at all in taking this drug. I have been in more pain and distress and will be contacting my G.P. on Monday.

  • mary September 16, 2015, 2:02 pm

    I experienced about a 15 pound weight gain on this drug which I was on for about 3 weeks then I tapered off with a lower dose. So all and all, I was on it for about a month. My most severe side effects have been intense overall body itching from head to toe, depression, and severe hair loss. Thank God I’m off of this drug… and I sweat intensely at night and during the day.

    • Cyn September 22, 2015, 12:54 am

      I have pain from spinal issues, neuropathy from scar tissue due to extensive spine surgeries at cervical, thoracic and lumbar levels. I also have a spinal cord stimulator implant. I have been on Gabapentin IR and ER, nortriptyline, Tramadol ER, & Oxycodone for almost 6 years. I know the gralise (gabepentin ER) has put 15 lbs. on my once 102 lb, 4’10” frame. 15 lbs may not sound like much but for someone who is short, 15 lbs is a huge weight increase.

      The. PM Dr. Said I wouldn’t gain any weight, but I did. Then she said I would only gain a little weight, then she said, oh no problem, if we keep you at 900mg you won’t gain but I kept gaining. Then she said oh, if you don’t gain in 2 years you are safe, but I kept gaining. I begged to get off of it. I’m still begging! I don’t want to be on the nortriptyline OR the gralise. There has got to be other drugs out there that won’t cause fat. Why do doctors lie so much about side effects? A patient has a right to make an informed choice.

      Isn’t there an obligation to be honest about side effects It’s my body, it’s my pain, it should be my decision about medication. No one will help get me lower the prescription dose. I hate my fat body, I’m so unhappy about being fat. My breasts are Huge, my fat is all over, none of my clothes fit. I hate what these doctors and these drugs have done. THIS DRUG IS A WEIGHT GAINER! JUST LIKE LYRICA. Doctors have a moral obligation to make you aware of the probability and give you a choice, not deny that it is happening.

      Meanwhile, your body gets used to taking it and then withdrawal and more pain is inevitable. I go to the only pain clinic in my area, there is no where else to get help. I asked a pharmacist about the weight gain potential of gabapentin. The pharmacist said everyone gains at least 5-10lbs. I asked why the company and doctors don’t tell the truth about it and the pharmacist said it was because they know no one will take it if they know the truth!

      • Nikk April 24, 2016, 1:52 am

        I’m in the same boat. I’m 5’2 and used to be 110 lbs give or take. I’ve gained 20 lbs at least when they upped me to 800mg 3x day. I had just lost 10 lbs from the last time they upped my dose. This time I’m lucky if I can get the gaining to stall, never mind losing it.

      • Beverly July 7, 2016, 9:53 am

        Try cutting the pills in half. Do a little experimenting on your own, pill cutters are cheap. Maybe try taking a half or one quarter and see which works best for you.

    • Jan December 9, 2015, 7:00 am

      Hi. I have been on the Gab for several months for fibro…neralgia… I have gained 20 pounds. My dose was 400 mg a day. Hair falling out like crazy. It is excellent for pain. I had to stop. Depression from my weight… And hair. I have gained weight from antidepressants before this… still fighting that. Off all pain meds now and still of antidepressants No progress losing any weight. But my hair growing back I hope soon?

  • Crystal September 2, 2015, 4:52 am

    Hi, my name is Crystal and I have been on Gabapentin for about a year now. I take it for pain and anxiety. I have spondylosis in my neck and lower back. I also have Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia. When I started Gabapentin I weighed 140 and I am 5 foot 6. I have gained forty pounds since taking it putting me at 180 pounds.

    This really depresses me because although I watch what I eat and do some low impact exercise, I can’t lose weight. I had an eating disorder when I was a teenager, and I am afraid because any weight gain makes me severely depressed. I guess my best option is to get off of it and beg my doctor for something else.

    • Karen April 16, 2016, 8:20 pm

      I also take this 800mg 1 @ bed time. Since I started 800 increased from 600 I have put on like 10 – 15 LBS. I cannot seem to lose any. At the same time I also cannot afford to buy all new clothes. I also am thinking of going off this med. I take it for fibromyalgia. But the extra weight is not helping me any.

  • Jane August 15, 2015, 9:13 am

    Thank you for these comments, makes me feel not so alone.

    • Julie July 10, 2016, 10:29 pm

      Same feeling here.

  • Whitney August 11, 2015, 3:49 am

    I was prescribed Gabapentin for my Trigeminal Neuralgia a year ago. I take 300 mg 3 times a day, along with 50 mg of Tramadol as needed. I am 44 years old, 5’3 and have always weighed between 105-115lbs. I am now struggling to lose weight at 135lbs.

    • Jackie dittmer January 19, 2016, 9:16 pm

      I have been taken gabapentin for little over a year now. I start with 100 mg x 3 times a day, just recently went to 300mg x 3 times day. I’m struggling with weight. I’m a person that hits the gym everyday. I work hard at it. I eat pretty healthy I think. I’m feel like I carry a lot of water. I’m not losing anything. I feel like I have gained 10-15 lbs that I can’t lose.

      • Matt January 30, 2016, 12:36 pm

        I am not alone! Same medication prescription and lifestyle. Yet, unable to shift the extra 18 lbs whatever I try. Whilst many people are struggling with weight gain here, possibly due to gabapentin, I recognize that I am so fortunate to be able to exercise. Many are struggling/suffering. My heart goes out to you all.

    • Linnea July 1, 2016, 1:11 pm

      Try asking for topiramate (topamax) instead… it actually helps you loose weight and helps with the Trigeminal nerve pain. I lost a pound a day for the first 21 days effortlessly… after that, you have to start working at it, but hopefully by then, you have the energy to start working it! I was on gabapentin for neuropathy pain for 22 years, and had gained 100 pounds while on the gabapentin.

      It was horrible drug withdraw getting off the gabapentin, but so worth it (no more fog brain!)!!! Tramadol works great for nerve pain (pink fluffy clouds), but is very addicting…just like xanax or valium…be careful building a tolerance level to that. ;) Good luck!

  • Amy Bowman August 10, 2015, 2:27 am

    I have went from a size 8 to a size 14 in one year. I am on 2 of the gold Gabapentin. But, it helps with the neuropathy in my feet and legs. I also have been told by several people that I look like I am swollen. I do have a hard time with motivation now and am always tired.

    • Jackie Aumiller August 10, 2015, 1:50 pm

      If I did not take Gabapentin I would not be able to walk. I have had 2 back surgeries and I walk with a cane. I also take tramadol, percoset, trazodone, and now Cymbalta, so when I went from a size 12 to 16 I didn’t know what I should blame for the weight gain. If the gabapentin helps the pain perhaps that will allow for more excersize and thus some weight loss? It’s hard to be fat, I know. It hurts. However there are websites that help with how to dress to hide some of the weight gain. Everything is a trade-off so says my therapist. Best wishes for you.

      • Cally November 30, 2016, 1:20 am

        I have been taking Gabapentin for over year and have packed on over 20 pounds!! I take 2400-3000 mg/day. I can’t seem to shake a pound, 😢 but I don’t have a choice – I can’t live with the nerve pain.

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