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Post Uploaded Date : March 21, 2024 Last Updated Date : May 15, 2024

Carisoprodol – A Detailed Guide

Carisoprodol is an effective medication used for musculoskeletal pain. It is available under various brand names. The standard dosage of this medication is 350 mg.

It is a Schedule IV controlled substance, which means it has a lower risk of abuse.

If you’ve ever suffered from muscle pain due to muscle spasms, sprains, or strains, you know how difficult it can be to do your daily activities. Most of us try different home remedies to feel better, like resting and taking over-the-counter medications.

If that fails and the pain is not resolved with home remedies, then muscle relaxers like carisoprodol are what your physician recommends.

Introduction To Carisoprodol

Carisoprodol is a drug used to relieve pain and discomfort caused by painful musculoskeletal conditions. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration only permits the use of this medication for up to three weeks.

Carisoprodol was first approved for medical use in the US in 1959 and is a schedule IV controlled substance (a drug with a lower risk of abuse and dependence) [1].

It is a white round tablet that contains carisoprodol as an active ingredient and inactive ingredients like lactose monohydrate, silicon dioxide, povidone, starch, croscarmellose sodium, microcrystalline cellulose, and magnesium stearate.

Carisoprodol Brand Names

The popular brand names of Carisoprodol are Soma, Soma-Dol, Rela, and Vanadom. However, the most commonly used and sought-after brand names of Carisoprodol are Soma and Soma-Dol.

The Soma pills are available in two dosage strengths: Soma 350 mg and 500 mg.

The Soma-Dol pills are available in the following dosage strengths: Soma-Dol 350 mg, Soma-Dol 500 mg, and Soma-Dol 750 mg

Carisoprodol Uses

The FDA-approved uses of Carisoprodol include treating skeletal acute pain associated with the following conditions –

  • Arthritis – It is a condition that causes tenderness or swelling in one or more joints.
  • Back Pain – Back pain is defined as a discomfort or pain felt anywhere along the spine or back, ranging from mild to severe.
  • Muscle strain or sprain – A muscle sprain is an injury in the ligaments and capsule of a joint whereas muscle strain is an injury in the tendons or muscle.
  • Fibromyalgia – pain or tenderness throughout the body accompanied by fatigue, sleep, mood, and memory issues.
  • Sciatica – Sciatica is a pain that is caused by irritation in the sciatic nerve. The pain is usually felt in the lower back to behind the thigh and can radiate down below the knee.

Carisoprodol is also beneficial in managing pain associated with injury, burns, and posture problems.

Off-label indications:

  • Carisoprodol can help with period cramps by relaxing the uterine muscles.
  • Carisoprodol improves the signs of stress, anxiety, and depression.

Carisoprodol: Mechanism Of Action

Carisoprodol works by altering or blocking communication between the nerves and the brain. Thus, the nerve cannot send pain signals to the brain, and as a result, we don’t feel the pain sensation [2].

Carisoprodol is metabolized in the liver and excreted through the kidneys via urination.

In the liver, Carisoprodol is metabolized to meprobamate, which contributes to the abuse potential of the muscle relaxer.

Carisoprodol Dosage

Carisoprodol is available in dosage strengths of 250, 350, and 500. However, the standard dosage of this muscle relaxer is 350 mg, which should be taken three times a day and during bedtime.

Whereas Soma 500 mg is recommended for patients when the lower dosages of the medication do not provide effective pain relief.

Proper Intake

  • Do not take Carisoprodol for more than the prescribed period.
  • Follow all the instructions of your doctor while taking this medication.
  • Do not crush the Carisoprodol pills.
  • Carisoprodol is an oral medicine, which means it should be taken by mouth.
  • Swallow the whole medicine with a glass of plain water.

Carisoprodol Overdose

Carisoprodol overdose can occur when someone consumes a very large amount of the drug accidentally or intentionally.

Some of the signs of Carisoprodol overdose can include – rapid heartbeat, coma, convulsions, stiffness of muscles, confusion, hallucinations, changes in vision, fainting, and slow or shallow breathing.

In the event of a Carisoprodol overdose, seek emergency medical help.

Carisoprodol Withdrawal

The prolonged use of Soma pills (Carisoprodol) can cause withdrawal symptoms. As with long-term use, the body becomes used to the medication and begins requiring the muscle relaxant in order to function normally.

Once the body becomes dependent on Carisoprodol, the user may experience withdrawal symptoms after stopping or lessening the dosage of the medication. Some of the withdrawal symptoms of Carisoprodol are – delusions, tremors, insomnia, vomiting, muscle twitching, and hallucinations.

Carisoprodol Warnings – Things To Consider

  • Do not stop using Carisoprodol suddenly without consulting a doctor first.
  • This drug is metabolized in the liver as mentioned already. If your liver is not functioning well, your body may process the drug slowly which may cause more side effects. To prevent this, talk to your doctor about your medical history.
  • People with kidney and heart problems should practice caution while taking this medication.
  • Pregnant and lactating women should refrain from taking Carisoprodol as it might cause harm to the baby.
  • Adults older than 65 should not take this medication.
  • Do not mix alcohol with Carisoprodol, as it can cause drowsiness and reduce cognitive ability [3].

Carisoprodol Side Effects

Three common side effects of Carisoprodol are –

  • Drowsiness
  • Headache
  • Dizziness.

Some of the serious side effects of Carisoprodol that require medical attention are –

  • Extreme weakness
  • Lightheadedness or fainting
  • Rapid heartbeat
  • Changes in vision
  • Seizure
  • Lack of coordination
  • Depression
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Sleep disturbances [4].

Long-Term Side Effects Of Carisoprodol

The long-term use of Carisoprodol can cause dependency or addiction in the user. Therefore, it is advised to take the muscle relaxant for no longer than the prescribed duration.

Carisoprodol Interactions

There are a total of 366 drugs that interact with Carisoprodol (377 are moderate, 28 are major, and 1 minor drug interaction).

In the table below, we’ve mentioned a few medications that have the potential to interact with Carisoprodol (this is not a complete list) [5].

Major drug interaction Moderate drug interaction
OxyContin Benadryl
Vicodin Lexapro
Norco Lyrica
Morphine Seroquel
Fentanyl Xanax

Final Note

Carisoprodol is a widely used muscle relaxant that effectively provides relief from acute musculoskeletal pain. It’s crucial for individuals to prioritize safety, as this medication comes with both risks and benefits, and seek professional medical advice before using this medication.


Is Carisoprodol a controlled substance?

Yes, Carisoprodol is a Schedule IV controlled substance.

How long does Carisoprodol stay in your system?

Carisoprodol stays in the system for 11 hours.

What is Carisoprodol used for?

Carisoprodol is used to relieve pain caused by acute musculoskeletal conditions such as sprain, strain, or muscle injury.

Does Carisoprodol have side effects?

Yes, Carisoprodol does have side effects ranging from common to serious.

Who should not take Carisoprodol?

Adults above the age of 65 and under the age of 16 should not take Carisoprodol.


  1. Carisoprodol, NCBI
  2. Side Effects of Soma (carisoprodol), medicinenet
  3. Carisoprodol, Oral Tablet, Healthline
  4. Soma Signs, Symptoms & Side Effects, therecovervillage
  5. Carisoprodol Interactions, Drugs Protection Status
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