Discussions that mention zanaflex

Cerebral Palsy board

I've had quite a few rounds of epidurals with no relief. I saw an ortho about Botox and he said I had too much spasm. He put me on Zanaflex, which I've been taking for about a year with only minimal relief of spasm. I'm still not a candidate for Botox, but I hope to be soon!! Do you take any type of sedative prior to the MRI? The most any doc will give me is valium but never enough to relax my spasms.


I have 2 types of pain in my back. I have the tight muscles on the left side (I am L hemiplegia ), and then I get what feels more like arthritic pain that starts in the left but travels to the right at times and also aggrevates the spasticity in the hamstrings. The second pain is more evident when I go to stand up or sit down then I have issues. If I am sitting and I go to stand then it take a while for me to stand all the way up.
This will be my second epidural so I hope it will work as well as the first. They used the xray guided technique and used cortisone for the pain reliever.

Boy, I am sorry to hear that they didn't work for you. I was just last week given a prescription for zanaflex by my botox doc. I have tight AB muscles on the left and now I have ribs that are displacing as well so they thought it might help. I haven't filled it yet because I heard it has side effects like drowsiness and it can lower your blood pressure. I already have a low blood pressure so I have some concerns. I was going to wait and see what the epidural would take care of before starting it. You like the zanaflex???

I don't get a whole lot of muscle spasms. Usually I only have trouble there when I am overly stressed or very tired. My CP was almost undetectable to the average person until about 3 years ago. Now I have all kinds of problems I never knew I had.
I was given the botox because I was dropping my foot and dragging it. They wanted me to try it because I was a huge tripping hazard.
I have a brace now also that helps with the dropped foot issue and it helps support my leg in a way that I have a bit less pressure on my back. It's hard to explain.

I wasn't given a sedative for my MRI, I was just trying to keep myself relaxed and calm throughout it. I know they can give sedation in some cases, especially where people feel claustraphobic. I am also finding out that new technology has presented something called an open MRI system that isn't all closed up like a coffin.

Well I wish you luck on all accounts, and keep in touch. Let me know more about what you think of zanaflex. I am trying to gather info from people who actually use it rather than what my doctor thinks.

I do like the Zanaflex. It reduced the spasticity in my legs and also the tightness in my lower back. I was prescribed 4mg before bedtime for 1 week and then told to increase to 8mg before bedtime because of the drowsiness that it caused, and yes, in the beginning I did get drowsey and a little loopy too. I was working in a chemistry lab at the time so I spent a lot of time on my feet and did notice pretty good results with the Zanaflex. My body was less rigid, but with the relaxing of the muscles in the lumbar area came the pain from the damaged discs. It took about a month for the drowsiness to subside and my blood pressure didn't drop at all. I would give it a try for awhile at night and see how your abs respond, just keep an eye on the blood pressure. I also had some tightness in my abs prior to taking Zanaflex and that is gone now. Keep me updated on what you decide.

I've tried the open MRI but no luck wtih that either. I guess I have to convince the doc to give me something that will knock me out for a couple of hours :).

Have you tried Bextra? I took it for awhile and it really helped with the arthritis pain in my hips and I didn't notice any side effects. I'm not sure if it is now on the Vioxx/Celebrex "bad drug" list you might want to check on it though.

Let me know how the epidural went today.


We need to chat more. You used to work in a chemistry lab?? I work in a hematology/flow cytometry laboratory!

I am interested in trying the zanaflex. I am going to give it a few days with the EPI and see what happens first, but your comments are encouraging to me. Thank you!

The EPI did not go as well as planned. The ball got dropped by the person who scheduled the injection and she put me in on a day when no sedation was available. Well My last one was rough with sedation so I was not happy. I didn't want to reschedule so I bit the bullet. My concerns are not as much with pain as they are with the fact taht I can't lay on a bed on my stomach and stretch my left leg all the way out. I also have my left arm tucked under me because of range of motion issues. I was afraid that I would get uncomfortable and maybe start to spasm or cramp. He did a good job and was in and out in about 10 minutes. I was thankful for that. apparently this clerk screwed up a couple other patients as well with the sedation issue.
I took it up with administration and the doctor and the administrator said it would be looked into immediately. But with no sedation I have to endure the pain that comes after the injection. I have been doing the tylenol and naprosin, but the whole day stressed me to a migraine. So I am dealing with that too. I have to work in the morning which also sucks!
But I am the energizer bunny and I keep going and going.......I will suck it up and bounce back. I usually do. Thanks for asking about me, it is most appreciated! This board has a lot of really great people! I have gotten many encouraging comments and helpful advice from several people! So those reading this post......YOU ROCK!

Sorry to hear that you had such a problem with the epi. I hope you are feeling better now. We definitely should chat more. I worked doing QC chem. for a pharmaceutical manufacturer.

I've had a variety of different muscle relaxors, zanaflex, valium, baclofen, and flexeril to name a few. I can't remember most of the dosages, but can tell you that zanaflex has worked the best.

I took Bextra consistently for about a year and it worked really well for the pain in my hips but didn't touch the back pain. The hip pain isn't so bad these days so I stopped taking it. Have you ever heard of or tried Soma? I know its a muscle relaxor, but I haven't heard anything about it. I'm going to start a thread on muscle relaxors it seems a lot of us on the board are curious about them.

Keep in touch :)