Compare Skelaxin vs. Zanaflex

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Relaxes your muscles.

Skelaxin (metaxalone) is used for muscle spasms and musculoskeletal pain with mixed results.

Relaxes your muscles.

Zanaflex (tizanidine) isn't a first-choice treatment for muscle spasticity. Try other options before using this.

4.3/ 5 average rating with 26 reviewsforZanaflex
  • Can be used for muscle spasms and muscle pain if other medications have not worked.
  • Available as generic.
  • Slightly less sedation and side effects compared to other muscle relaxants.
  • Relieves muscle spasticity.
  • Available as a generic.
  • Available in a tablet or capsule form. It also comes in a capsule that can be opened and sprinkled in applesauce for people that can't swallow pills.
  • Effects don't last that long. You need to take Skelaxin (metaxalone) up to 3-4 times daily.
  • Several studies showed mixed results when Skelaxin (metaxalone) was compared with a sugar pill for treatment of muscle spasms and musculoskeletal pain.
  • Can make you very drowsy or sleepy
  • Even though a generic is available, it is still fairly expensive.
  • This isn't a first-choice muscle relaxing medication. Other drugs work better and have fewer side effects.
  • Takes over an hour to kick in and only lasts 3 to 6 hours.
  • Zanaflex (tizanidine) can lower blood pressure, so be careful if you are already on a blood pressure medication.
  • Need to be consistent every day in taking this with or without food.
  • Elderly individuals have more side effects when taking Zanaflex (tizanidine).
Used for
  • Musculoskeletal pain
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Pill
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26 reviews so far
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Side effects
The Skelaxin (metaxalone) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
17possible side effects
  • Dry mouth
  • Sleepiness
  • Weakness
  • Dizziness
  • Urinary tract infection
  • General infection
  • Liver test abnormality
  • Constipation
  • Vomiting
  • Speech disorder
  • Blurred vision
  • Urinary frequency
  • Flu syndrome
  • Involuntary muscle movement
  • Nervousness
  • Sore throat
  • Hay fever
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Sleepiness and dizziness
    • Taking other medications that also cause sleepiness
    • Recreational drug use
    • Excessive alcohol use
  • Serotonin syndrome
    • Taking antidepressants
    • Higher than recommended doses of Skelaxin (metaxalone)
  • Liver damage
    • History of liver disease
  • Liver or Kidney problems
    • History of liver disease
    • History of kidney disease
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Liver damage
    • Taking maximum doses of Zanaflex (tizanidine)
  • Dizziness and low blood pressure
    • Age 65 years or older
    • Currently on blood pressure control medications
  • Sleepiness and driving impairment
    • Taking other medications that also cause sleepiness
    • Recreational drug use
    • Excessive alcohol use
    • Elderly
  • Withdrawal side effects
    • Stopping Zanaflex (tizanidine) suddenly
See more detailed risks and warnings