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Baclofen Vs Soma: Comparison Based on Clinical Studies & Expert Opinions

Baclofen Vs Soma: Comparison Based on Clinical Studies & Expert Opinions


Baclofen vs. Soma is a comparative study of the two most popular muscle relaxers.

The FDA approves Baclofen and Soma for managing muscle spasms. Both muscle relaxants are potent and available on prescription only. 

However, the Soma pill is a better analgesic choice for people looking for effectiveness on a budget. On the other hand, Baclofen is suggested for individuals seeking alternative methods of administering muscle relaxants, including oral liquid, intrathecal, and transdermal.



Patients and healthcare professionals often compare Baclofen and Soma to determine the proper analgesic treatment for body pain. 

Soma pill and Baclofen are muscle relaxers prescribed for musculoskeletal conditions. They both belong to the same drug class and showcase certain similarities in their uses and benefits. However, they work in different ways and have unique characteristics.  Understanding the differences between Baclofen and Soma is crucial for patients and healthcare providers to make informed treatment decisions. 

This blog explores the key aspects of Baclofen and Soma, including their mechanisms of action, effectiveness, side effects, and more, backed by clinical studies and expert opinions. It will provide insights to help you choose the most suitable muscle relaxant for your specific healthcare needs.


Soma And Baclofen- An Overview

Baclofen and Soma pills are effective analgesics that are often prescribed for acute pain.

What is Soma?

Soma pill is a brand drug for Carisoprodol that was approved by the FDA in 2006 [1]. Also called Dan 5513 pills, it is one of the USA's most effective and popular muscle relaxers. According to a survey evaluating the Carisoprodol usage statistics in the USA, about 872,202 prescriptions were written in 2019 [2].

Soma pills work by blocking the communication between nerves and the brain to produce muscle relaxation and pain relief. It is commonly prescribed for the short-term treatment of muscle spasms and discomfort associated with acute musculoskeletal conditions.

- Off-label uses of Soma

  • The use of the Soma pill for treating period cramps is very effective for treating discomfort associated with primary dysmenorrhea.

  • The sedative effect of the Soma pill can help with anxiety by calming the brain and the central nervous system. 

  • Soma pill can also help relieve tension headaches by relaxing the brain's blood vessels, thus managing signs of migraine. 

What is Baclofen?

Also available under the brand names Lioresal and Gablofen, Baclofen is an effective treatment for short-term body pain. The FDA approved its medical use in 1977. In 2020, it was also the 108th most commonly prescribed medication, with over 6 million prescriptions in the USA [3]. 

Baclofen works on the central nervous system and enhances the inhibitory effects of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) to reduce muscle activity. It is commonly prescribed to manage muscle spasms and stiffness associated with conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS), spinal cord injuries, and cerebral palsy. Baclofen is also an effective treatment for sleep-related painful erections [3].

- Off-label uses of Baclofen

  • Studies show that using Baclofen for Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is effective for moderate to severe symptoms. It is significant in treating AUD who do not respond to their first-line treatment or have a liver issue [7].

  • For managing signs of hiccups, gastroesophageal reflux disease, and Trigeminal neuralgia [6].

 A few other notable characteristics of Baclofen and Soma are provided below.



Soma Pill 


Generic name



Brand name

Pain O Soma, Prosoma, and Watson Soma

US Brand Name:

  • Lyvispah.

  • Fleqsuvy.

  • Ozobax

  • Gablofen.

Canadian Brand Name:

  • Lioresal.

  • Lioresal Double Strength [4]. 


HAB Pharmaceuticals.

Rosemont Pharmaceuticals.

Legal Status

  • USA- Schedule IV prescription drug. 

  • UK: POM (Prescription only).

  • US: Prescription only.

  • AU: S4 (Prescription only).

Class of drug

Skeletal muscle relaxant.

Skeletal muscle relaxant. 

Dosage Form

Oral tablet

  • Oral tablet

  • Oral Liquid

  • Intrathecal solution

  • Transdermal


Baclofen Vs Soma- Similarities

While Baclofen and Soma are distinct medications with unique characteristics, they also share certain similarities that are important to understand when comparing them.

  • Prescription Drugs- Baclofen and Soma pills are prescription drugs and are not available over the counter. 

  • The onset of Action- Both medications work within 30 minutes of intake. 

  • Muscle relaxation- Both Baclofen and Soma are prescribed to relieve muscle spasms and discomforts.

  • Central Nervous System (CNS) effects- Both medications exert their effects on the CNS, although through different mechanisms of action.

  • Short-term use- Both Baclofen and Soma are typically recommended for short-term use to manage acute muscle-related discomforts.

  • Pregnancy Category- Both muscle relaxants are category C pregnancy drugs.




Understanding The Differences 

So, is Soma The Same As Baclofen? 

Mentioned below are the specifics to understand how Baclofen and Soma differ and whether Soma is the same as Baclofen.

Mechanism Of Action

Baclofen: Baclofen acts by binding to GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) receptors in the central nervous system. When the GABA receptor is activated, it increases the influx of potassium ions, which helps lower the transmission of the signals between neurons [18]. 

Soma: It is a centrally-acting skeletal muscle relaxant. The working mechanism of Soma involves altering interneuronal activity, which blocks pain signals from reaching the brain's GABA receptors. The medication is eliminated via the kidneys, with a relatively short half-life of 1.7 to 2 hours [19].

Dosage Guidelines 

Baclofen: Baclofen is available in 5 mg, 10 mg, and 20 mg oral tablets. It is also available as injections at 0.5 mg/mL, 2 mg/mL, 1 mg/mL, 0.05 mg/mL, and 5 mg/mL.

5 to 20 mg of Baclofen can be taken 3 times daily, which should be taken 6 to 8 hours apart.

Soma: Soma pill is available in the strengths of 250mg, 350 mg, and 500 mg.

The lower dose of the Soma pill is recommended for beginners. Depending on the severity and cause of the pain, it can be gradually increased to 500 mg. 

The Soma pill can be taken thrice daily and once before bed, with a dosage gap of 5 to 6 hours.  


Baclofen: This medication can be taken orally by mouth, transdermally (patches), and intrathecally (injections).

Soma: The Soma pill can be taken orally by directly swallowing it without breaking or crushing. It is not recommended for use over three weeks. Soma can be taken before or after a meal. 

Duration Of Action

The duration of action of both the Soma and Baclofen pills is 4 to 6 hours [23]. 

However, it is essential to note that the duration of action may vary depending on factors such as metabolism, medical conditions, and dosage. 


The price of the Soma pill and Baclofen plays a key role in determining the right muscle relaxer. The cost of Soma 350 and 500 mg at Healthnaturo is $0.74. 

The price of Baclofen 10 mg tablet, as listed in Singlecare, is $1.81 per pill. 

User Reviews Comparison

This Baclofen and Soma review is based on the information obtained from two popular and trusted medical websites, Drugs and WebMD [24,25,26,27]. 

- Bacfolen User Review 

On Drugs.com, Baclofen has an average rating of 7.0 out of 10, based on feedback from 433 reviewers. Among these, 61% reported experiencing positive effects, while 24% reported encountering negative ones.

Baclofen has a rating of 3.5 out of 5 on WebMD

- Soma Pill User Review 

Soma received an average rating of 9.2 out of 10 based on feedback from 198 reviewers on Drugs.com. 92% of these reviewers reported experiencing positive effects, while only 5% reported encountering adverse effects.

Based on its user experiences, the medical team of WebMD has rated Carisoprodol with 4.2 out of 5. 


Side Effects And Health Risks

While headache, drowsiness, and dizziness are common side effects, individuals may also experience the following:


Side Effects Of Baclofen 

Soma Pill Side Effects 


Dry mouth

High blood pressure


Urinating frequently

Chest pain

Tiredness or weakness

Blurry vision




Possible Drug Interaction Of Soma And Baclofen 




Soma pill and Baclofen, when taken with other medications, can cause drug interaction, which can lower the efficacy of the muscle relaxers and increase the risk of side effects. 

Soma can interact with 368 drugs, and Baclofen can interact with 365 drugs. A few medicines (not a complete list) that can cause drug interactions have been provided below-

















Precaution And Warning


  • The Baclofen pill is not recommended for people with stroke and Parkinson's disease [6].

  • It is not approved for treating skeletal muscle spasms associated with rheumatologic disorders [6].

  • People with respiratory disease, urinary retention, decreased Gastrointestinal (GI) motility, or obstructive disorder should consult a doctor before taking Baclofen. 

  • Avoid taking alcohol with Baclofen. 

  • Patients with a history of seizures should be constantly monitored. 

  • Before taking Baclofen, inform your pharmacist and doctor if you are allergic to any of the compounds in the medication's formulation. 

  • Pregnant and nursing mothers should not take Baclofen.

Soma Precautions 

  • People over 65 and below 17 years are not recommended to take the muscle relaxer without consulting a physician. 

  • Inform your doctor about taking the Soma pill before surgery or tooth extraction.

  • Soma is not recommended for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers.

  • Talk to your doctor about any medical history, such as liver or kidney disease or treatments you're undergoing before taking Soma.

  • Do not take Soma and alcohol together.


Baclofen Vs Soma- Our Final Thought 

Both Baclofen and Soma have received FDA approval for addressing short-term acute pain. They exhibit similarities in terms of their therapeutic effects and associated risks. However, Soma distinguishes itself as a cost-effective choice offering prompt pain relief within 30 minutes.

Although Baclofen does not serve as a direct substitute for Soma, it is favored among individuals with swallowing difficulties who favor oral or injectable treatments.

We strongly advise seeking guidance from a healthcare professional prior to initiating any medication regimen.


Baclofen is not often recommended for muscle spasms other than those caused by multiple sclerosis, making the Soma pill (Carisoprodol) a better option.

It is not recommended to take Soma and Baclofen together. Co-administering them can increase the risk of experiencing confusion, dizziness, difficulty concentrating, and drowsiness.

Muscle relaxers such as Carisoprodol and cyclobenzaprine are considered a better option.

Yes, improper dosing and long-term use of Soma pills and Baclofen can cause addiction and withdrawal symptoms.

The onset of action of both Soma and Baclofen pills are 30 minutes.

Baclofen use is associated with side effects such as drowsiness, unsteadiness, dizziness, vision issues, and clumsiness.

It is safe to take Carisoprodol when taken in the right dose, and the administration guidelines mentioned by your physician are followed. However, the risk of abuse and dependency arises from long-term intake of the muscle relaxer.

No, Baclofen can only relax a certain muscle in the body. It effectively treats muscle tightness, cramps, and spine injuries.

Soma and Baclofen are muscle relaxants that work differently and have varying strengths. However, Soma is often considered to have a more potent effect than Baclofen. Also, which one is "stronger" can vary based on factors such as the specific muscle-related issue, the person's tolerance, and their overall health condition. It's essential to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the most appropriate medication for your specific needs.


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