Understanding Soma Pills: Beyond the Basics

Understanding Soma Pills: Beyond the Basics

Soma pill, the brand name version of Carisoprodol, is a muscle relaxer approved for treating short-term acute pain. Beyond its prescription use, it is also effective for pain associated with menstrual cramps, migraines, and fibromyalgia. 

Soma is used to manage muscle pain, especially in skeletal muscle injuries.

This blog aims to provide more in-depth knowledge about Soma pills. This includes their mechanism of action, general effects, and lesser-known aspects.

We will discuss the history of Soma pills, their potential for abuse, and precautions to be taken while using them.

What is soma: A Brief History of Its Origin

The development of Soma pills dates back to the mid-20th century, when Dr. Frank M. Berger, a British pharmacologist, synthesized carisoprodol [1]. It was initially marketed under the trade name "Soma" in the late 1950s. Since then, it has been used extensively to treat sudden muscle and bone pain caused by injuries or muscle spasms. Over the years, the drug has been made in different ways, such as with other painkillers or muscle relaxants.

Potential Risk for Soma Abuse and Dependence

Soma pills are classified as a Schedule IV controlled substance in the United States [2]. This classification means Soma could be abused, leading to physical or mental dependence.

The drug has been reported to cause feelings of relaxation and euphoria in some users. This can lead to misuse or abuse. 

The Drug Abuse Warning Network reports increased emergency department visits for carisoprodol or Soma abuse [3].

carisoprodol-abuse

People who abuse Carisoprodol or Soma pill may experience the following symptoms [4]-

  • Loos of Coordination

  • Blurry vision

  • Drowsiness

  • Dizziness

  • Depression

  • Tightness in the chest

  • Chills

  • Weakness

You may also have withdrawal symptoms if you abruptly stop taking Soma pills after using them for a long time. It is essential to follow the prescribed dosage and duration of treatment to minimize the risk of abuse and dependence.

Precautions and Contraindications

Before starting treatment with Soma pills, it is essential to tell your doctor about any allergies or health problems you already have. Certain precautions should be taken when using this medication [5]:

  1. Soma pills can cause drowsiness and affect cognitive functioning. Therefore, it is best to avoid driving or operating heavy machinery while taking the drug.

  2. Combining Soma with alcohol or other CNS depressants can be risky. It can lead to severe side effects, such as respiratory depression or extreme drowsiness.

  3. Soma is not recommended for patients who have a history of acute intermittent porphyria. This is a rare genetic disorder that affects the production of heme, a component of hemoglobin.

  4. Pregnant and breastfeeding women should consult their healthcare provider before using Soma. 

A study suggests that taking Carisoprodol during breastfeeding and pregnancy can excrete Carisoprodol and meprobamate into the breast milk. There are no major signs of developmental toxicity or defects in the fetus [6]. 

carisoprodol-for-pregnant-and-nursing-mothers

It is, however, advisable for pregnant and nursing mothers to take Soma dosage only under the supervision of a physician. 

Drug Interactions and Health Risks of Soma Muscle Relaxer

Some prescription drugs, like benzodiazepines, opioids, and some antidepressants, can react with soma pills. These interactions could make the drugs less effective or increase the risk of side effects. Tell your doctor about all the medicines, supplements, and herbal products you take to avoid any possible interactions.

Some of the medicines that can cause Drug interaction when co-administered with Soma pills are [7]:

  • Abatacept

  • Etomidate

  • Diphenoxylate

  • Benzphetamine

  • Levorphanol

  • Gemfibrozil

  • Methsuximide

  • Clobazam

  • Pirfenidone

  • Omeprazole

These drug interactions, along with other factors such as improver dosing and health conditions, may result in side effects. 

Common side effects of Soma pills include drowsiness, dizziness, headaches, and dry mouth. These side effects are generally mild and resolve on their own. Some of the adverse effects of taking the Soma pill are [8]:

  • Nausea

  • Irritability

  • Insomnia

  • Agitation

  • Dizziness

  • Sweating

  • Diarrhea

Discontinue the treatment if you experience severe side effects. Some signs, like trouble breathing, a swollen face or throat, or signs of an allergic reaction, should be immediately reported to a physician.

Our Verdict On Using Soma Pill As An Analgesic

Soma pill has successfully relieved acute musculoskeletal pain. However, it is essential to be mindful of the risks of abuse, side effects, and drug interactions. Consult your healthcare provider before beginning or ceasing any medication.

A Soma vs Flexeril comparative analysis suggests that the Soma pill or Carisoprodol is a much more potent, affordable, and safe pain management. 

References-

  1. Carisoprodol, wikipedia.

  2. Carisoprodol (Trade Name: Soma), usdoj.gov.

  3. Carisoprodol: Update on Abuse Potential and Legal Status, researchgate.net.

  4. Carisoprodol Abuse in Adolescence - PMC - NCBI

  5. Carisoprodol (Oral Route) Precautions - Mayo Clinic

  6. High-dose carisoprodol during pregnancy and lactation, NCBI. 

  7. Carisoprodol: Uses, Interactions, Mechanism of Action, drugbank. 

  8. Soma side effects center, rxlist.com. 

Author’s Note

We strive to provide reliable and accurate health information; thus, the content on our blogs is based on thorough research from reputable papers and journals. Our team relentlessly keeps updating the information on our blogs and articles to ensure it is always up to date with the latest medical research and developments. We advise all our readers to seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional before taking any medication or healthcare product mentioned on our blog or website.

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