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Flexeril vs. Ultram

Reviewed on 5/9/2019

Are Flexeril and Ultram the Same Thing?

Flexeril (cyclobenzaprine) and Ultram (tramadol) are used to treat back pain.

Flexeril is indicated as an adjunct to rest and physical therapy for relief of muscle spasm associated with acute, painful musculoskeletal conditions.

Ultram is used to treat moderate to moderately severe pain in adults.

Flexeril and Ultram belong to different drug classes. Flexeril is a muscle relaxant and Ultram is a pain reliever (analgesic).

Side effects of Flexeril and Ultram that are similar include headache, drowsiness, dizziness, stomach pain or upset, nausea, diarrhea, or constipation.

Side effects of Flexeril that are different from Ultram include dry mouth or throat, blurred vision, fatigue, loss of appetite, gas, or muscle weakness.

Side effects of Ultram that are different from Flexeril include agitation, nervousness, anxiety, seizures (convulsions), skin rash, spinning sensation, hallucinations, fever, fast heart rate, overactive reflexes, vomiting, loss of coordination, and fainting.

Both Flexeril and Ultram may interact with alcohol, other drugs that make you drowsy (narcotics, sleeping pills, muscle relaxers, tranquilizers, sedatives, or medicines for anxiety or seizures), medicines to treat Parkinson's disease, blood pressure medications, and antidepressants.

Flexeril may also interact with atropine, bronchodilators, guanethidine, tramadol, bladder or urinary medications, irritable bowel medications, monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), barbiturates, bupropion, cold or allergy medicine that contains an antihistamine, and medicines to treat excess stomach acid or stomach ulcer and motion sickness.

Ultram may also interact with antibiotics, antifungal medications, heart medications, medicines to treat HIV or hepatitis C, antipsychotic medicines, and migraine headache medicines, medicines to treat serious infections.

Do not stop using Ultram suddenly, or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Flexeril?

Common side effects of Flexeril include:

  • dry mouth or throat
  • headache
  • blurred vision
  • drowsiness
  • dizziness
  • fatigue
  • loss of appetite
  • stomach pain
  • nausea
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • gas, or
  • muscle weakness.

What Are Possible Side Effects of Ultram?

Common side effects of Ultram include:

  • agitation,
  • nervousness,
  • anxiety,
  • seizures (convulsions),
  • skin rash,
  • dizziness,
  • spinning sensation,
  • hallucinations,
  • fever,
  • fast heart rate,
  • overactive reflexes,
  • nausea,
  • vomiting,
  • upset stomach,
  • diarrhea,
  • constipation,
  • loss of coordination,
  • headache,
  • drowsiness, and
  • fainting.

What Is Flexeril?

Flexeril (cyclobenzaprine) is a muscle relaxant indicated as an adjunct to rest and physical therapy for relief of muscle spasm associated with acute, painful musculoskeletal conditions.

What Is Ultram?

Ultram is a strong prescription pain medicine that contains an opioid (narcotic) that is used for the management pain in adults, when other pain treatments such as non-opioid pain medicines do not treat your pain well enough or you cannot tolerate them. Ultram is an opioid pain medicine that can put you at risk for overdose and death. Even if you take your dose correctly as prescribed you are at risk for opioid addiction, abuse, and misuse that can lead to death.

QUESTION

Nearly everyone has low back pain at some time during their life. See Answer

What Drugs Interact With Flexeril?

Flexeril especially when used with alcohol or other CNS depressants, may impair mental and/or physical abilities required for performance of hazardous tasks, such as operating machinery or driving a motor vehicle.

What Drugs Interact With Ultram?

Ultram is contraindicated in patients receiving MAO inhibitors or who have used them within the previous 14 days.

The use of clozapine and lorazepam may produce marked sedation, excessive salivation, hypotension, ataxia, delirium, and respiratory arrest.

How Should Flexeril Be Taken?

For most patients, the recommended dose of Flexeril is 5 mg three times a day. Based on individual patient response, the dose may be increased to 10 mg three times a day. Use of Flexeril for periods longer than two or three weeks is not recommended.

How Should Ultram Be Taken?

Do not change your dose. Take Ultram exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Use the lowest dose possible for the shortest time needed.

Take your prescribed dose as indicated by your health care provider. The maximum dosage is 1 or 2 tablets every 4 to 6 hours, as needed for pain relief. Do not take more than your prescribed dose and do not take more than 8 tablets per day. If you miss a dose, take your next dose at your usual time.

Call your healthcare provider if the dose you are taking does not control your pain.

If you have been taking Ultram regularly, do not stop taking Ultram without talking to your healthcare provider.

After you stop taking Ultram, ask your pharmacist how to dispose of any unused tablets.

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References


FDA. Flexeril Product Information.

https://www.accessdata.fda.gov/drugsatfda_docs/label/2013/017821s051lbl.pdf

Janssen. Ultram Product Information

http://www.janssenlabels.com/package-insert/product-monograph/prescribing-information/ULTRAM-pi.pdf

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