Prescription onlyLower-cost generic availableClass: Neurology

Neurontin Alternatives

(gabapentin)

Prescription onlyLower-cost generic availableClass: Neurology
Back to: Full Site Navigation

Compare Neurontin (gabapentin) to alternatives

These medications are comparable to Neurontin (gabapentin) or used for similar purposes.

Neurontin
(gabapentin)

Cymbalta
(duloxetine)

Lyrica
(pregabalin)

Depacon
(valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex)

Elavil
(amitriptyline)

Norpramin
(desipramine)

Pamelor
(nortriptyline)

Lidoderm
(lidocaine)

Treats tingling and burning nerve pain. Neurontin (Gabapentin) is an old seizure disorder medicine that's now used to treat nerve-related pain caused by different conditions.Improves mood and relieves certain kinds of pain. Cymbalta (Duloxetine) is good for treating depression and anxiety, and may help with chronic pain. More likely than other antidepressants to cause problems if you drink or have high blood pressure.Treats nerve pain and prevents seizures. Lyrica (Pregabalin) works well as an add-on medicine for seizures and fibromyalgia, but it's especially effective for nerve-related pain after shingles. Not available as a generic, so it might be expensive.Prevents seizures and stabilizes mood. Depacon (Valproate, Valproic Acid, Or Divalproex) is good long-term prevention for epilepsy, bipolar disorder, and migraines, but can cause weight gain.Improves mood and relieves certain kinds of pain. Elavil (Amitriptyline) is an older antidepressant that's sometimes used to treat pain and sleep problems, but it can have more side effects than similar medications.Stabilizes your mood. Norpramin (desipramine) is not a first choice for treating depression because of its effects on the heart, but it can be good if other medicines haven't worked.Improves your mood. Pamelor (Nortriptyline) is a good option for treating depression, especially for people who also have problems with persistent nerve pain.Treats nerve pain. Lidoderm (Lidocaine) patches work well by releasing a local anesthetic into the skin and relieving pain by targeting damaged nerves.
Find lowest prices
Powered by GoodRxSave on your next prescription. Be sure you’re getting the lowest price for your medication, even if you have insurance.
Coupons for Neurontin
Prices and coupon for 90 (300mg) capsules of gabapentin
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.56Neurontin
Reviews for Neurontin
57%
of people (All ages) say Neurontin is worth it
40%
say it works well
19%
say it's a big hassle
620 reviews
Have you used Neurontin (gabapentin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Cymbalta
58%
-1% worse vs. Neurontin
49%
-9% worse vs. Neurontin
24%
+5% better vs. Neurontin
496 reviews
Have you used Cymbalta (duloxetine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Lyrica
47%
+10% better vs. Neurontin
42%
-2% worse vs. Neurontin
32%
+13% better vs. Neurontin
Have you used Lyrica (pregabalin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Depakote
46%
+11% better vs. Neurontin
40%
Same vs. Neurontin
27%
+8% better vs. Neurontin
Have you used Depacon (valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Elavil
53%
+4% better vs. Neurontin
36%
+4% better vs. Neurontin
25%
+6% better vs. Neurontin
134 reviews
Have you used Elavil (amitriptyline)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it

Not enough reviews for this treatment. Help someone out, leave a review!

Have you used Norpramin (desipramine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Pamelor
79%
-22% worse vs. Neurontin
79%
-39% worse vs. Neurontin
21%
+2% better vs. Neurontin
Have you used Pamelor (nortriptyline)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Lidocaine
67%
-10% worse vs. Neurontin
72%
-32% worse vs. Neurontin
22%
+3% better vs. Neurontin
Have you used Lidoderm (lidocaine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Dizziness 21%
  • Drowsiness 16%
  • Leg or ankle swelling 6%
  • Muscle weakness 1%
  • Diarrhea 2%
  • Infection 2%
  • Dry mouth 3%
  • Constipation 2%
  • Accidental injury 2%
  • Vomiting 2%
More Neurontin side effects »
  • Nausea 15%
  • Headache 2%
  • Dry mouth 8%
  • Somnolencee 7%
  • Fatigue 4%
  • Sleep difficulty 4%
  • Constipation 5%
  • Dizziness 4%
  • Diarrhea 3%
  • Decreased appetite 5%
More Cymbalta side effects »
  • Nerve damage 6%
  • Dizziness 3%
  • Lack of muscle coordination 5%
  • Accidental injury 2%
  • Chest pain 3%
  • Leg or ankle swelling 2%
  • Muscle weakness 2%
  • Drowsiness 1%
  • Passing gas 2%
  • Dry mouth 2%
More Lyrica side effects »
  • Nausea 7%
  • Drowsiness 7%
  • Dizziness 8%
  • Vomiting 9%
  • Accidental injury 6%
  • Muscle weakness 3%
  • Abdominal pain 1%
  • Indigestion 1%
  • Any side effect 4%
  • Rash 3%
More Depakote side effects »

The Elavil FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Elavil side effects »

The desipramine FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about desipramine side effects »

We haven’t found good data for Pamelor side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Pamelor »

The Lidocaine FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Lidocaine side effects »
How it works
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
Neurontin (Gabapentin) is an antiepileptic and nerve pain reliever. Researchers don't know exactly how it works, but it has a similar structure to GABA, a neurotransmitter that calms nerves in the brain and spinal cord.Cymbalta (Duloxetine) is a serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI) antidepressant. It increases serotonin and norepinephrine activity in the brain, which regulates mood.Lyrica (Pregabalin) is a nerve pain reliever. Researchers don't know exactly how it works, but it has a similar structure to GABA, a neurotransmitter that calms nerves in the brain and spinal cord.Depacon (Valproate, Valproic Acid, Or Divalproex) is an antiepileptic. Researchers don't know exactly how it works. It seems to increase the amount of GABA, a chemical that calms nerves in the brain.Elavil (Amitriptyline) is a tricyclic antidepressant (TCA). Researchers don't know exactly how it works. It may change serotonin and norepinephrine activity in the brain, which regulates mood and pain perception. It also has sedative effects.Norpramin (desipramine) is a tricyclic antidepressant. It increases the amount of norepinephrine and serotonin in the brain, two chemicals that regulate mood.Pamelor (Nortriptyline) is a tricyclic antidepressant (TCA). It helps improve your mood by altering the levels of serotonin, norepinephrine, and other similar chemicals in your brain.Lidoderm (Lidocaine) is a local anesthetic. It absorbs into your skin where it targets damaged nerves and relieves burning pain.
Type of medication
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
Prescription onlyPrescription onlyPrescription onlyPrescription onlyPrescription onlyPrescription onlyPrescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Pill
  • Oral solution
  • Extended release
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Extended release capsule
  • Sprinkle
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Pill
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Cream, gel, or ointment
  • Jelly
  • Spray
  • Topical solution
  • Patch
Used for
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
Risk factors for serious side effects
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Children ages 3 to 12
  • Taking with alcohol or drugs
  • Stopping Neurontin (Gabapentin) suddenly
Detailed Neurontin (gabapentin) risks & warnings »
  • Age 24 years or younger
  • Using other medications that affect serotonin
  • Stopping Cymbalta (Duloxetine) suddenly
  • History of high blood pressure
  • Taking other blood-thinning drugs
Detailed Cymbalta (duloxetine) risks & warnings »
  • Taking with alcohol
  • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
  • History of unusual swelling (angioedema)
  • Taking other medications that can angioedema
  • History of cardiovascular disease
Detailed Lyrica (pregabalin) risks & warnings »
  • Children under age 2
  • History of metabolic disorders
  • History of depression
  • People also taking Topamax
Detailed Depacon (valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex) risks & warnings »
  • Age 24 years or younger
  • History of bipolar disorder
  • At risk for bipolar disorder
  • History of cardiovascular disease
  • Age 65 years or older
Detailed Elavil (amitriptyline) risks & warnings »
  • People under age 24
  • Tricyclic antidepressants
  • Fentanyl
  • Tramadol
  • Buspirone
Detailed Norpramin (desipramine) risks & warnings »
  • Age 24 years or younger
  • Age 65 years or older
  • Stopping Pamelor (Nortriptyline) suddenly
  • Using other medications that affect serotonin
  • History of heart disease
Detailed Pamelor (nortriptyline) risks & warnings »
  • Use of heating pad on skin
  • Applying patch to red, irritated or broken skin
  • Leaving patch on for more than 12 hours
  • Using patch on a very large area
  • Older age and lower body weight
Detailed Lidoderm (lidocaine) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

The FDA hasn’t classified this medicine’s effects on unborn babies. Talk with your doctor about this medicine if you’re pregnant or planning on it.

Research studies with animals haven’t found a risk to unborn babies, but it hasn’t been properly studied in humans.

Price
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
No price related info.No price related info.
  • Not available as a generic, so it can be pricey.
No price related info.No price related info.No price related info.No price related info.No price related info.
Alcohol
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
No alcohol related info.No alcohol related info.
  • It's not safe to take this medication with alcohol or other drugs that make you drowsy.
No alcohol related info.No alcohol related info.No alcohol related info.No alcohol related info.No alcohol related info.
Food
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Take the extended-release tablet with food.
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
No food related info.
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
No food related info.No food related info.
  • Take it with food and/or at bedtime to decrease the potential side effects.
No food related info.
Kidneys and liver
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
No kidneys and liver related info.
  • Not a good option if you're a heavy drinker, or if you have liver or kidney problems.
No kidneys and liver related info.
  • Can cause liver damage, so it's probably not safe if you already have liver problems.
No kidneys and liver related info.No kidneys and liver related info.No kidneys and liver related info.No kidneys and liver related info.
Pain
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Studies show it's most effective for nerve pain from diabetes, shingles, and fibromyalgia (a painful muscle condition).
  • Full effects in 8 to 12 weeks for mood, 2 weeks for pain.
  • Has a higher risk than other pain medicines of affecting your heart rate or rhythm, so it might not be the best choice if you have cardiovascular disease (previous heart attack, stroke, fast/uncontrolled heart rate, or irregular heartbeat).
No pain related info.
  • Low doses work well to treat certain kinds of chronic pain. It can take 2 weeks to feel the full effects of the medication.
No pain related info.No pain related info.
  • Lidoderm (Lidocaine) can treat pain better for people who can't take oral pain medications due to allergies or bad side effects.
  • Has been shown to relieve nerve pain due to shingles for up to 12 hours at a time.
Sleep
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Neurontin (Gabapentin) is likely to cause some side effects, including memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness, or confusion.
No sleep related info.
  • Lyrica (Pregabalin) is likely to cause some side effects, including memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion.
  • Can make you drowsy or dizzy.
No sleep related info.
  • Can cause dizziness, drowsiness, constipation, and weight gain.
No sleep related info.No sleep related info.No sleep related info.
Weight
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
No weight related info.No weight related info.No weight related info.
  • Can cause upset stomach, hair loss, weight gain, sleepiness, and tremor.
  • May cause hair loss and weight gain.
  • It's more likely to cause sleepiness, nausea, constipation, diarrhea, and weight gain (1 to 5 pounds) than other antidepressants.
No weight related info.No weight related info.No weight related info.
Upsides and benefits
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Originally used to treat epilepsy (partial seizures), but now it primarily treats neuropathic pain that's caused by nerve stimulation or damage.
  • Studies show it's most effective for nerve pain from diabetes, shingles, and fibromyalgia (a painful muscle condition).
  • It's available as a generic, so it's less expensive than similar medications.
  • Effective at relieving depression and anxiety symptoms.
  • Lowers relapse rates for depression.
  • Can relieve some types of chronic pain. Might be particularly good at pain relief for people who are also depressed.
  • Six out of ten people who use an antidepressant for the first time find that it works for them.
  • Relieves nerve-related (neuropathic) pain caused by different conditions including diabetes, shingles (herpes zoster), fibromyalgia, and spinal cord damage.
  • Studies show that lower doses of Lyrica (Pregabalin) cause fewer side effects and still relieve pain just as well as higher doses.
  • Also used in combination with other medications to treat epilepsy (partial seizures).
  • Lowers the frequency of seizures, especially for people with absence, tonic-clonic, and complex partial seizures.
  • One of the first-line options to stabilize mood for people with bipolar disorder.
  • Helpful in preventing frequent migraine headaches.
  • Low doses work well to treat certain kinds of chronic pain. It can take 2 weeks to feel the full effects of the medication.
  • Low doses of Elavil (Amitriptyline) start working in 45 minutes to help you sleep better.
  • Six out of every ten people who use an antidepressant for the first time find that it works for them.
  • Norpramin (desipramine) is available in generic and in many different strengths, so the dose can be more customized.
  • Norpramin (desipramine) has fewer side effects than similar tricyclic antidepressants.
  • Helpful with treating certain types of pain, like migraines or nerve-related pain.
  • Generally well tolerated and has fewer side effects than other medicines in the same class of drugs.
  • Lidoderm (Lidocaine) can treat pain better for people who can't take oral pain medications due to allergies or bad side effects.
  • Has been shown to relieve nerve pain due to shingles for up to 12 hours at a time.
  • Patches can be cut into smaller pieces to best fit the areas of skin they need to be used on.
Downsides and risks
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Neurontin (Gabapentin) is likely to cause some side effects, including memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness, or confusion.
  • You can't skip or miss doses since suddenly stopping Neurontin (Gabapentin) can cause seizures. This is even more likely if you drink alcohol, so it might not be the best medication for heavy drinkers.
  • Not a good option if you're a heavy drinker, or if you have liver or kidney problems.
  • Not the best option for people with high blood pressure.
  • Like most antidepressants, can cause higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people age 24 and younger.
  • The first antidepressant you try doesn't always work or it can cause side effects you really don't like. You might need to try a few different medications until you find one that works for you.
  • Not available as a generic, so it can be pricey.
  • You can't skip or miss doses since suddenly stopping Lyrica (Pregabalin) can cause seizures.
  • Lyrica (Pregabalin) is likely to cause some side effects, including memory problems, drowsiness, dizziness, and confusion.
  • Has a higher risk than other pain medicines of affecting your heart rate or rhythm, so it might not be the best choice if you have cardiovascular disease (previous heart attack, stroke, fast/uncontrolled heart rate, or irregular heartbeat).
  • Can cause upset stomach, hair loss, weight gain, sleepiness, and tremor.
  • Can cause liver damage, so it's probably not safe if you already have liver problems.
  • Not safe to use if you're pregnant.
  • Requires routine blood tests to see how the medicine is affecting your body.
  • When used for depression, Elavil (Amitriptyline) causes more side effects and has a higher risk of overdose than other antidepressants. It's usually used when other medications haven't worked.
  • It's more likely to cause sleepiness, nausea, constipation, diarrhea, and weight gain (1 to 5 pounds) than other antidepressants.
  • People age 65 and older have a higher risk for this medication's side effects.
  • Like most antidepressants, it can cause a higher risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior for people age 24 and younger.
  • The first antidepressant you try doesn't always work or it can cause side effects you really don't like. You might need to try a few different medications until you find one that works for you.
  • Norpramin (desipramine) isn't recommended if you or your family has heart disease, seizures, or glaucoma.
  • Norpramin (desipramine) isn't a first choice for depression because it has more side effects than other antidepressants.
  • In some people, Norpramin (desipramine) can make you sleepy. In other people, Norpramin (desipramine) can keep you awake.
  • If you have diabetes, Norpramin (desipramine) can make your blood sugar go up.
  • Not recommended in children under 12 years of age.
  • Side effects are usually manageable, but can be annoying.
  • Increases the risk of falls, especially when used in the elderly.
  • There's an increased chance of it causing heart problems, especially in people with a history of heart problems.
  • Can cause skin irritation after using it the first time, but for most people it's mild and goes away in a few minutes or hours.
  • Used patches contain enough medicine to be dangerous to children and pets, so store and dispose of the patches in a safe place out of their reach.
  • Might not be the best choice if you've had allergic reactions to numbing medications (local anesthetics) in the past.
  • Even though only small amounts of Lidoderm (Lidocaine) are absorbed into the body through the skin, if you're taking medications that treat arrhythmias, Lidoderm (Lidocaine) can affect how they work.
  • Patches shouldn't be left on for more than 12 hours, used on very large areas of skin, or covered with a heating pad.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
NeurontinCymbaltaLyricaDepakoteElavildesipraminePamelorLidocaine
  • Side effects are common, but usually manageable.
  • Don't drive while taking Neurontin (Gabapentin) until you know how the medication affects you.
  • Neurontin and generic forms of Gabapentin have the same ingredients as Gralise and Horizant, but are dosed differently. Make sure you know which form you're taking since they are used for different purposes.
  • Take the extended-release tablet with food.
  • Stop taking Neurontin (Gabapentin) slowly over at least one week to avoid getting withdrawal symptoms.
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
  • Full effects in 8 to 12 weeks for mood, 2 weeks for pain.
  • Stop taking slowly to avoid withdrawal symptoms.
  • Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts.
  • Some people feel relief from pain in a week.
  • Can make you drowsy or dizzy.
  • Don't stop taking it suddenly without talking to your doctor. You'll need to slowly lower your dose over at least a week to avoid withdrawal symptoms.
  • Tell your doctor if you have unexplained confusion or changes in your thoughts or behavior.
  • It's not safe to take this medication with alcohol or other drugs that make you drowsy.
  • For the first week, avoid activities that require you to be alert.
  • Don't use if pregnant.
  • Requires routine blood tests.
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
  • May cause hair loss and weight gain.
  • Different versions of Depakote have different dosing. Be careful.
  • Report confusion, persistent abdominal pain, yellowing of eyes/skin, or easy bruising to your doctor.
  • Takes 3 to 4 weeks to feel full effects on mood.
  • Take at bedtime to avoid some of its side effects.
  • Can cause dizziness, drowsiness, constipation, and weight gain.
  • Stop taking it slowly to avoid getting withdrawal symptoms.
  • Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts.
  • Don't drive or do anything requiring concentration until you know how Norpramin (desipramine) affects you since it can make you feel sleepy.
  • Talk to your doctor right away if your mood suddenly darkens and you want to hurt yourself while taking Norpramin (desipramine).
  • If you're being switched to Norpramin (desipramine) from monoamine oxidase inhibitors, you'll need to wait 2 weeks before you can start it.
  • Don't stop taking Norpramin (desipramine) suddenly without talking to your doctor first.
  • Needs to be taken every day for 1 to 2 weeks to start feeling better, and for 6 to 8 weeks to see the full effect of the medication.
  • It's important to keep taking Pamelor (Nortriptyline) even when you feel your symptoms are getting better.
  • Take it with food and/or at bedtime to decrease the potential side effects.
  • Tell your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or unusual thoughts.
  • If you decide to stop taking Pamelor (Nortriptyline), work with your doctor to slowly get off this medicine to avoid getting withdrawal symptoms.
  • Starts working with the first dose, but full effects can take longer.
  • Remove the protective lining on the patch before applying the patch to unbroken skin.
  • Leave the patch on for up to 12 hours during a 24 hour period.
  • You can cut the patches to create a custom fit for the area of skin you need to apply it to.
  • Don't place any tight wraps or heating pads over the patch while it's on.
  • Make sure not to touch your eyes after touching the patch. Always wash your hands after putting it on or taking it off.
Learn more
More about NeurontinSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Neurontin (gabapentin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about CymbaltaSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert
Have you used Cymbalta (duloxetine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about LyricaSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert
Have you used Lyrica (pregabalin)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about DepakoteSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert
Have you used Depacon (valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about ElavilSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert
Have you used Elavil (amitriptyline)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about desipramineSide effectsFDA package insert
Have you used Norpramin (desipramine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about PamelorSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert
Have you used Pamelor (nortriptyline)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about LidocaineSide effectsReviews & ratingsFDA package insert
Have you used Lidoderm (lidocaine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it