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What is tizanidine?

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Quick Answer

WebMD states that tizanidine treats muscle spasms by relaxing the muscles. Tizanidine is used to treat conditions such as spinal cord injury and multiple sclerosis, and a common brand name is Zanaflex.

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Full Answer

WebMD states that tizanidine is taken orally every six to eight hours. A lower dose is often prescribed first and then increased to reduce side effects. The maximum recommended daily dosage is 36 milligrams. A doctor prescribes tizanidine in either tablet or capsule form and advises whether to take the medication with food or on an empty stomach. To prevent negative interactions, patients need to let the doctor know about all prescription and nonprescription drugs as well as supplements and herbal products he takes.

Tizanidine can cause withdrawal reactions if used in high doses or for an extended period of time, according to WebMD. Withdrawal symptoms of tizanidine include an increased heart rate, increased blood pressure, tremors, anxiety and muscle tension and should be reported to a medical professional immediately. Tizanidine should not be discontinued without medical consultation. Common side effects of Tizanidine are constipation, dry mouth, dizziness, lightheadedness and tiredness. Serious side effects are vision changes, fainting, mental changes, an altered heartbeat and mood changes. Liver disease is a rare side effect of tizanidine.

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