Are there any negative side effects of the pain killer Fioricet?
My doctor prescribed Fioricet to me for my migraines.
My Rx says that I can take 2 pills – 4 times a day. Are there any known long term side effects from using this drug? I take them pretty regularly.
If you are between the ages of 18 and 60, take no other medication or have no other medical conditions, side effects you are more likely to experience include:
- Dizziness, drowsiness, lightheadedness, sedation, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, or an intoxicated feeling are the most commonly reported side effects.
- Other side effects, such as constipation, excessive sweating, itch, serious skin reactions, and mental confusion are less common.
- Butalbital is habit-forming and there is a high risk of dependence with extended and repeated use of Fioricet. Therefore it is not considered a first-choice medicine for headaches.
- May cause medication-overuse headache with repeated use and a withdrawal syndrome upon discontinuation.
- The potential for liver damage with the acetaminophen component exists, even at recommended dosages. The risk is increased with higher dosages, with chronic alcohol use, with some medications, and in patients with significant liver disease.
- May not be suitable for some people, including the elderly and people with kidney or liver disease.
- Although Fioricet may be prescribed for migraine headaches, it is not FDA approved for this and evidence does not support its use for migraine.
- Should not be used during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
- May interact with a number of other medications including those that also cause sedation such as opioids, benzodiazepines, and sedating antihistamines. Alcohol should be avoided.