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Thread: Gabapentin -- opioid activity?

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    Gabapentin -- opioid activity? 
    #1
    Bluelighter MONSTA!!'s Avatar
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    I've been a heroin addict for about 10 years, I was recently prescribed Gabapentin for nerve pain due to the loss of two fingers as a result of a bad injection.

    Having been using this site for many years I was aware of its potential to reduce opioid withdrawal.

    What has startled me is its effectiveness, all mental and physical symptoms of withdrawal disappear with a large enough dose, including increased peristalsis and diarrhoea. However most physical symptoms seem to reappear on discontinuance.

    So my question is could Gabapentin have mild opioid activity?
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    #2
    Bluelight Crew Solipsis's Avatar
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    I don't think so. It's effects are mediated through calcium channel blockage which reduces the activity of excitatory neurotransmitters.

    Gabapentinoids like that have potential to relieve the worst of withdrawals of alcohol or benzo dependency too. Sedatives / anxiolytics like benzos can also take the edge off opioid withdrawals but I'm not sure if it's effective in the same way as gabapentinoids.

    I think that during withdrawals from depressants, there is neuronal overactivity as a result of discontinuation of the depressant. So generally, reducing that activity should partially relieve the worst of some withdrawal symptoms. So it's not a direct substitution, but an indirect one. The attenuation of excitatory neurotransmitters is not the same as just increasing inhibitory activity the way depressants act. It seems like a more preventative remedy than trying to counter excitatory activity... just like taking stimulants together with depressants is not the same as being sober. So: the potential for withdrawal relief will be a bit different than, say, taking a benzo for opioid withdrawals.

    In my experience, gabapentin was very useful for making GHB withdrawals quite manageable.
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    #3
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    Cotcha Yankinov's Avatar
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    ^What solipsis said regarding withdrawal having to do with rebound excitatory activity and gabapentin being good at suppressing that.

    I would compare it to Clonidine for opioid withdrawal in the sense that both may decrease the rebound sympathetic nervous system (flight) activation.
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    #4
    I had been wondering the same thing since last Summer. Now I have had my fair share of opiate withdrawals but was pretty darn impressed in how it completely eliminated kratom withdrawal. Now I know for me kratom withdrawal is light, nothing like an H or poppy tea withdrawal. But the way gabapentin took away the slight chills, lack of energy as well as restlessness had me impressed and realized there is lots to learn. I think I am also impressed at the emotions/visuals that can happen sometimes on gabapentin. Also at times it feels like an opiate on top of an opiate.

    It is quite possible the more we learn that withdrawals can be a lot less painful than they are by tricking the body into thinking it does or does not feel things.

    I am very cautious though with gabapentin. I never take it more than one a week for sciatica. To me it is a strong drug. Also to me phenibut is not similar in effects and can not be used interchangeably. Saying that I have never had pregabalin. At this point since gabapentin works with my sparing and light usage I don't need pregabalin.
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    #5
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    Gabapentin doesn't block Ca, it just stops the rate of reaction that would cause an influx of it

    opioids hyperpolarize membrane potential, so in effect decrease Ca influx too

    The only standout mechanism of both that I know is that they're substance P inhibitors, which increases their utility as painkillers.

    They give gabapentin out for lots of addictions. It's not perfect but its basically useful.
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    #6
    Bluelight Crew Solipsis's Avatar
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    If overactivity of VDCC's is big part of encitotoxicity, doesn't that make withdrawals from gabapentinoids harmful?
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