It has been announced that from April 2019 both Pregabalin & Gabapentin, (also marketed under the brand name Lyrica) are to be reclassified as class C controlled drugs.
This move comes after a lengthy consultation which found an increase in the number of deaths over the last few years, which experts claim are linked to both of these medications.
It has also been claimed that these medications are frequently being used recreationally and are common drugs within the prison setting.
The medications are used to treat neuropathic pain, fibromyalgia and anxiety disorders, but is also used as a secondary therapy in patients with epilepsy.
From April 2019 doctors will have to hand write the prescriptions – rather than being able to send to pharmacies electronically for regular prescriptions. There will also be more stringent collection procedures in line with controlled drug policies.