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Saudi Journal of Kidney Diseases and Transplantation
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ORIGINAL ARTICLE Table of Contents   
Year : 2015  |  Volume : 26  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 1142-1148
The effect of gabapentin on muscle cramps during hemodialysis: A double-blind clinical trial


1 Chronic Renal Failure Research Center, Ahwaz Jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
2 Department of Nephrology, Imam Reza Hospital, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran
3 Department of Chemistry, Islamic Azad University, Omidiyeh Branch, Omidiyeh, Iran

Correspondence Address:
Abbasali Zeraati
Department of Nephrology, Imam Reza Hospital, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad
Iran
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DOI: 10.4103/1319-2442.168588

PMID: 26586051

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Hemodialysis‐associated muscle cramps (HAMC) are a common complication during hemodialysis (HD) sessions. A number of pharmacologic agents have been evaluated to prevent and or diminish HAMC; however, none of them has an established role. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to evaluate the possible effect of gabapentin on HAMC. In a double-blinded clinical trial, we compared the possible effect of gabapentin with a placebo in prevention and or diminishing episodes of HAMC in HD patients who had experienced frequent intradialytic muscle cramps. At first, placebo was given before each dialysis session for four weeks and then, after a two-week washout period, 300 mg of gabapentin was given before each dialysis session for four weeks to verify the effect of gabapentin on HAMC. Overall, 15 patients (seven men and eight women; mean age, 52.02 years) with frequent intradialytic muscle cramps were enrolled in the study. The incidence of symptomatic muscle cramp decreased in the gabapentin group compared with the placebo group, with a significant difference between them (P = 0.001). The intensity of muscle cramps also decreased in the gabapentin group (P = 0.001). There was no significant association between HAMC in male and female patients (P = 0. 397), mean age of HD patients (P = 0.226) and cause of end-stage renal disease (P = 0.551). According to the results of our study, gabapentin prescription before each HD session significantly reduced the frequency and the intensity of muscle cramps during HD without any major side-effects.


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