West Virginia pharmacy board: Gabapentin, 'drug of concern'

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A surge of overdoses has led the West Virginia Board of Pharmacy to designate the nerve-pain medication gabapentin, sold under the brand name Neurontin, as a “drug of concern.”
The Charleston Gazette-Mail reports the board’s acting executive director, Mike Goff,  told state lawmakers Tuesday, “There has been a tremendous increase in the number of gabapentin dispensings,” and overdoses involving it. Goff also said the board has started to track gabapentin sales.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved gabapentin to treat seizures and pain caused by shingles. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has promoted the drug as a safer alternative to prescription opioids.
State lawmakers are expected to introduce legislation next month that would classify gabapentin as a controlled substance in West Virginia.
Information from: The Charleston Gazette-Mail, http://wvgazettemail.com.