What is Zanaflex?

Zanaflex is the brand name for tizanidine. It is a short-acting muscle relaxer that works by blocking nerve impulses (pain sensations) that are sent to your brain. Zanaflex is used to treat spasticity by temporarily relaxing muscle tone. This is a short-acting medication that should be taken only for daily activities that require relief from muscle spasticity.

Important Information about Zanaflex

Zanaflex should be taken only as directed. Taking more than three doses (36 mg) of Zanaflex in a 24-hour period can cause liver damage.

Tell your doctor of any other medications that you are taking while on Zanaflex. There can be serious drug interactions.

Prolonged use and misuse of Zanaflex can have serious effects on ones health. Potentially resulting in a tolerance, dependency and withdrawal syndrome.

Zanaflex Side Effects

Along with the desired effects of Zanaflex there are often side effects associated with its use. Most commonly patients will experience mild side effects such as;

  • Anxiety
  • back pain
  • constipation
  • depression
  • diarrhea
  • difficulty in speaking
  • dizziness or lightheadedness, especially when getting up from a lying or sitting position
  • drowsiness
  • dry mouth
  • heartburn
  • increased sweating
  • increased muscle spasms or tone
  • muscle weakness
  • pain or burning in throat
  • runny nose
  • skin rash
  • sleepiness
  • stomach pain
  • uncontrolled movements of the body

Other more common side effects to Zanaflex will require the immediate attention of your doctor, including;

  • Chest pain or discomfort
  • fever
  • loss of appetite
  • lower back or side pain
  • nausea and/or vomiting
  • nervousness
  • pain or burning while urinating
  • painful or difficult urination
  • sores on the skin
  • tingling, burning, or prickling sensations
  • unusual tiredness
  • yellow eyes or skin

Seek emergency help if you experience any of the following symptoms of Zanaflex over dose including;

  • Blurred vision
  • change in consciousness
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • confusion
  • decreased awareness or responsiveness
  • difficult or troubled breathing
  • dizziness, faintness or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying position
  • irregular, fast or slow, or shallow breathing
  • lightheadedness, dizziness or fainting
  • loss of consciousness
  • pale or blue lips, fingernails, or skin
  • severe sleepiness
  • shortness of breath
  • sleepiness or unusual drowsiness
  • slow or irregular heartbeat
  • sweating
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Zanaflex Uses

Zanaflex is used for the short term treatment of muscle spasticity. The medication works by temporarily relaxing muscle tone. Do not take larger doses than prescribed, do not take this medication longer than prescribed.

Zanaflex is commonly misused, taken in larger doses to experience extreme relaxation. Taking large doses can cause damage to the liver. The intentional misuse of Zanaflex can result in a tolerance, dependency and withdrawal syndrome.

Zanaflex Dosage and Directions

The recommended dose for Zanaflex is 8 mg. The medication meets a peak within 1 to 2 hours, its effects ware off within 3 to 6 hours. Doses are typically given every 6 to 8 hours, not exceeding 3 doses in a 24 hour period. Zanaflex should only be taken for daily activities that require relief from muscle spasticity.