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UK. Pregabalin and gabapentin to be controlled as class C drugs 

New controls over prescription drugs pregabalin and gabapentin following rising fatalities. (Home Office and Victoria Atkins MP, UK, 15.10.2018)


UK. Consultation outcome: Pregabalin and gabapentin: proposal to schedule under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001 

Detail of outcome

On 13 November 2017, the Home Office asked for views on options whether, and how, to schedule pregabalin and gabapentin under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001. This followed the recommendation by the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) that pregabalin and gabapentin should be controlled as Class C drugs under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971 (‘the 1971 Act’) and placed in Schedule 3 to the Misuse of Drugs Regulations 2001. The consultation lasted until 22 January 2018 and was UK-wide.

Responses were accepted from members of the public, healthcare professionals, institutions, all sectors within the supply chain including the pharmaceutical industry, wholesalers, and community pharmacies in the UK.

The Home Office is grateful for the views of those who responded to the consultation. On balance, the government is of the view that option 2 – to schedule the drugs under Schedule 3 to the 2001 Regulations but without the safe custody requirements – provides appropriate and necessary safeguards while ensuring that there are not unduly onerous storage requirements for pharmacists, wholesalers and others. (Home Office, UK, 15.10.2018)


Willis-Ekbom disease/restless legs syndrome in patients with opioid withdrawal.

Gupta R, Ali R, Ray R.

Sleep Med. 2018 May;45:39-43. doi: 10.1016/j.sleep.2017.09.028. 



Triphasic Waves and Encephalopathy in the Setting of Pregabalin Toxicity.

Anand P, Kaplan PW.

J Clin Neurophysiol. 2018 Sep 11. doi: 10.1097/WNP.0000000000000511. 



Gabapentin (Neurontin).

Yasaei R, Saadabadi A.

StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2018 Jan-.
2018 Mar 16.


Gabapentin for Off-Label Use: Evidence-Based or Cause for Concern?

Peckham AM, Evoy KE, Ochs L, Covvey JR.

Subst Abuse. 2018 Sep 23;12:1178221818801311. doi: 10.1177/1178221818801311. 


Insights into the Structure, Function, and Ligand Discovery of the Large Neutral Amino Acid Transporter 1, LAT1.

Singh N, Ecker GF.

Int J Mol Sci. 2018 Apr 24;19(5). pii: E1278. doi: 10.3390/ijms19051278. Review.


USA. Health officials are sounding an alarm on the drug gabapentin. And it's not even an opioid.

People are using the prescription painkiller gabapentin to boost their highs, doctors say. (...) Kentucky last year became the first state to classify gabapentin as a controlled substance after the drug showed up in a third of the state’s fatal overdoses in 2016. (NBC News, 01.04.2018)


Opioids and Gabapentin: A Potentially Dangerous Mixture

(Janaburson’s Blog, USA, 10.04.2018)


The Association of Gabapentin Use and Dose With Substance Use Disorders Prior to Inpatient Mental Health Treatment: A Cross-Sectional Study.

Tomko JR, Prasad KM, Kubas S, Simpson T.

Prim Care Companion CNS Disord. 2018 Aug 2;20(4). pii: 18m02291. doi: 10.4088/PCC.18m02291.


MEDIKAMENTENABHÄNGIGKEIT.Osnabrücker Arzt über Fluch und Segen von Lyrica und Cannabis

Osnabrück. Medikamentenabhängigkeit: Osnabrück. Wann ist ein Patient abhängig und warum werden im Osnabrücker Schmerzzentrum Pillen gezählt? Im Gespräch mit unserer Redaktion erklärt Dr. Carsten Brau die Hintergründe und verrät, wie er ein Jahr nach der Einführung des Cannabisgesetzes zum „Kiffen auf Rezept“ steht. Osnabrücker Arzt über Fluch und Segen von Lyrica und Cannabis. (NOZ – Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung, 18.04.2018)


Hold the Gaba: A Case of Gabapentin-induced Hepatotoxicity.

Jackson CD, Clanahan MJ, Joglekar K, Decha-Umphai ST.

Cureus. 2018 Mar 4;10(3):e2269. doi: 10.7759/cureus.2269.


Pregabalin dispensing patterns in Amman-Jordan: An observational study from community pharmacies.

Al-Husseini A, Abu-Farha R, Wazaify M, Van Hout MC.

Saudi Pharm J. 2018 Mar;26(3):306-310. doi: 10.1016/j.jsps.2018.01.012.


Gabapentin use, abuse, and the US opioid epidemic: the case for reclassification as a controlled substance and the need for pharmacovigilance.

Peckham AM, Ananickal MJ, Sclar DA.

Risk Manag Healthc Policy. 2018 Aug 17;11:109-116. doi: 10.2147/RMHP.S168504.


Reversible Thrombocytopenia after Gabapentin in an HIV-Positive Patient.

Basith M, Francis A, Bellon A.

Case Rep Psychiatry. 2018 Jan 4;2018:5927065. doi: 10.1155/2018/5927065.


A pharmacokinetic drug-drug interaction study between pregabalin and tramadol in healthy volunteers.

Lee S, Kim Y, Lee JJS, Im G, Cho JY, Chung JY, Yoon S.

Eur J Clin Pharmacol. 2018 Aug 22. doi: 10.1007/s00228-018-2543-0.



Gabapentin dose and the 30-day risk of altered mental status in older adults: A retrospective population-based study.

Fleet JL, Dixon SN, Kuwornu PJ, Dev VK, Montero-Odasso M, Burneo J, et al. (2018)

PLoS ONE 13(3): e0193134. doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0193134


Rising pregabalin use and misuse in Australia: trends in utilisation and intentional poisonings.

Cairns, R., Schaffer, A. L., Ryan, N., Pearson, S.A., and Buckley, N. A. (2018)

Addiction, doi.org/10.1111/add.14412.



Prevalence of gabapentin in drug overdose postmortem toxicology testing results.

Slavova S, Miller A, Bunn TL, White JR, Kirschke D, Light T, Christy D, Thompson G, Winecker R.

Drug Alcohol Depend. 2018 Mar 10;186:80-85. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2018.01.018.



Gabapentin is a potent activator of KCNQ3 and KCNQ5 potassium channels.

Manville RW, Abbott G.

Mol Pharmacol. 2018 Jul 18. pii: mol.118.112953. doi: 10.1124/mol.118.112953.


Utilization of gabapentin by people in treatment for substance use disorders in Belgium (2011-2014): a cross-sectional study.

Van Baelen L, De Ridder K, Antoine J, Gremeaux L.

Arch Public Health. 2018 Mar 19;76:17. doi: 10.1186/s13690-018-0254-8.


The FDA and the Next Wave of Drug Abuse - Proactive Pharmacovigilance.

Throckmorton DC, Gottlieb S, Woodcock J.

N Engl J Med. 2018 Jul 19;379(3):205-207. doi: 10.1056/NEJMp1806486. 


USA. Doctors sound the alarm on "opioid alternative" gabapentin

LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- A drug that has been touted as a safe alternative to opioid painkillers is now on the radar of health officials and law enforcement officials as it is being found in more and more overdose death. Gabapentin is a nerve pain medication that is typically used to treat seizures and pain associated with shingles. But amid the opioi epidemic that has ripped through the country, doctors have been prescribing it for a growing number of conditions in an attempt to find new ways to offer pain relief to patients -- and more people appear to be abusing it. (CBS, USA, 02.04.2018)



Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed) [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US); 2006-.


Warum das Suchtpotenzial von Lyrica unterschätzt wird

Osnabrück. Die Schmerzmittel Lyrica und Oxycodon haben hohes Suchtpotenzial und sind offenbar in der Osnabrücker Drogenszene leicht zu bekommen. In den USA hat Präsident Donald Trump wegen der Opiodepidemie bereits den Gesundheitsnotstand erklärt. Was macht die Medikamente so gefährlich? Das erklärt Peter Flüchter, Chefarzt des Suchtmedizinischen Zentrums des Ameos-Klinikums Osnabrück. (Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung, 10.03.2018)



Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMed) [Internet]. Bethesda (MD): National Library of Medicine (US); 2006-.


Rausch auf Rezept Nach Tod ihres Verlobten: Osnabrückerin warnt vor Lyrica und „Oxys“

Osnabrück. Eigentlich lief es für F. aus Osnabrück nach vielen Jahren Drogenabhängigkeit ganz gut mit dem Methadonprogramm. Doch dann begann er, Tabletten zu nehmen – Lyrica und Oxycodon. Diese Woche wurde F. beerdigt. Seine Verlobte sagt: F. ist nicht der Erste aus der Szene rund um den Raiffeisenplatz, der in diesem Jahr in Folge von Schmerzmittelmissbrauch gestorben ist. (Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung, 10.03.2018)


Pregabalin Misuse and Abuse in Jordan: a Qualitative Study of User Experiences.

Al-Husseini A, Wazaify M, Van Hout MC.

Int J Ment Health Addict. 2018;16(3):642-654. doi: 10.1007/s11469-017-9813-4. Epub 2017 Sep 15.


Pregabalin-induced first degree atrioventricular block in a young patient treated for pain from extrapulmonary tuberculosis.

Schiavo A, Stagnaro FM, Salzano A, Marra AM, Bobbio E, Valente P, Grassi S, Miniero M, Arcopinto M, Matarazzo M, Napoli R, Cittadini A.

Monaldi Arch Chest Dis. 2017 Sep 28;87(3):838. doi: 10.4081/monaldi.2017.838.


On the addictive power of gabapentinoids: a mini-review.

Bonnet U, Richter EL, Isbruch K, Scherbaum N.

Psychiatr Danub. 2018 Jun;30(2):142-149. doi: 10.24869/psyd.2018.142.


Use of preoperative gabapentin significantly reduces postoperative opioid consumption: a meta-analysis.

Arumugam S, Lau CS, Chamberlain RS.

J Pain Res. 2016 Sep 12;9:631-40. doi: 10.2147/JPR.S112626.


Concomitant drug abuse of opioid dependent patients in maintenance treatment detected with a multi-target screening of oral fluid.

Wagner E, Raabe F, Martin G, Winter C, Plörer D, Krause DL, Adorjan K, Koller G, Pogarell O.

Am J Addict. 2018 May 24. doi: 10.1111/ajad.12737.



Substance misuse of gabapentin.

Smith BH, Higgins C, Baldacchino A, Kidd B, Bannister J.

The British Journal of General Practice. 2012;62(601):406-407. doi:10.3399/bjgp12X653516.


Effect of preoperative gabapentin and acetaminophen on opioid consumption in video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery: a retrospective study.

Qiu R, Perrino AC Jr, Zurich H, Sukumar N, Dai F, Popescu W.

Rom J Anaesth Intensive Care. 2018 Apr;25(1):43-48. doi: 10.21454/rjaic.7518.251.gab.


Trial of tramadol plus gabapentin for opioid detoxification.

Ziaaddini H, Ziaaddini A, Asghari N, Nakhaee N, Eslami M.

Iran Red Crescent Med J. 2014 Dec 29;17(1):e18202. doi: 10.5812/ircmj.18202.


Pregabalin misuse in methadone maintenance treatment patients in Israel: Prevalence and risk factors.

Sason A, Adelson M, Schreiber S, Peles E.

Drug Alcohol Depend. 2018 May 29;189:8-11. doi: 10.1016/j.drugalcdep.2018.04.025.