Healthcare Cost

How Much Does Zanaflex (Tizanidine) Cost Without Insurance?

Jasiah Hasan
Jasiah Hasan19 May 2023

Tizanidine is the generic form of Zanaflex, a muscle relaxant drug relieves muscle spasms for disorders like multiple sclerosis (MS), stroke, and brain or spinal injury. The medication costs approximately $20.61 for 30 4mg tizanidine tablets and $47.04 for 90 4mg tablets. The price depends on the dosage form, pharmacy location, and brand name.

Cost of Tizanidine Without Insurance

Tizanidine should be taken in 2mg doses for adults every 6 to 8 hours, but your doctor might adjust your dosage as needed. You should not take more than 36mg per day. The capsule form of tizanidine is available in 2, 4, and 6mg; the tablet form is in 2 and 4 mg. Without insurance, the average cost for 30-count 4mg tizanidine tablets is $20.61; the average cost for 90-count 4mg tizanidine tablets is $47.04. 

The tables below reflect the average retail price for 4mg tizanidine tablets across popular New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston pharmacies. Prices are consistent and affordable across CVS, Walmart, and Costco pharmacies but vary slightly and are more expensive at Walgreens. 

Pharmacy NameCost (30 count)Cost (90 count)
CVS $17.35$34.06
Walgreens $39.00 - $41.00$110.00 - $111.00
Walmart $9.00$24.00
Costco Pharmacy $15.10$19.10

Sources: GoodRx, Costco (as of 05/17/2023). Locations: New York City, NY; Los Angeles, CA; Chicago, IL; and Houston, TX

Factors Impacting the Cost of Tizanidine

Tizanidine is only available with a doctor’s prescription and cannot be purchased over the counter. Its average cost can vary significantly. The most important factors affecting tizanidine's pricing are dosage form, pharmacy location, and brand name. 

Dosage Form: Tablet Vs. Capsule

The oral capsule form of tizanidine is significantly more expensive than the oral tablet. The major difference between capsule and tablet medications are:

  1. Tablets are made entirely of compressed and powdered medicine. In contrast, capsules contain powdered or liquefied medication inside a hard or soft shell.
  2. Tablets can be crushed or split, but capsules cannot. Tablets can also be orally dissolvable or chewable, but capsules cannot be chewed.
Tizanidine Dosage FormAverage Price 
Capsule (30 count)2 mg $23.10
4 mg $38.10
6 mg $45.30
Tablet (30 count)2 mg $19.07
4 mg $20.61

Source: (as of 05/15/2023)

Generic Vs. Brand Name

The brand-name version of tizanidine is called Zanaflex. Generic tizanidine is consistently more affordable than Zanaflex. The table below reflects the average prices of 30-count generic tizanidine tablets versus Zanaflex tablets. 

 Tizanidine (Generic)Zanaflex (Brand)
Average Price $19.07 - $21.00$100.80
Average Price Per Tablet$0.64 - $0.70$3.36

Source: (as of 05/15/2023)

Pharmacy Location

As seen earlier, medication prices vary based on location. Generally speaking, Zanaflex does not vary too much based on pharmacy, but tizanidine does. The following table compares pharmacy prices for 30-count 4mg generic tizanidine tablets versus Zanaflex tablets in New York City.

Pharmacy NameGeneric Tizanidine CostZanaflex Cost 
CVS $17.35$94.83
Walgreens $41.00$91.00
Walmart $9.00$92.90
Costco Pharmacy $15.10$92.91

Sources: GoodRx, Costco (as of 05/15/2023)

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Ways to Save on Tizanidine Without Insurance

Luckily, there are many ways to save on tizanidine. Prescription discount cards are an easy and accessible option for saving money. Use GoodRx or SingleCare for free coupon cards. MiraRX is another excellent option for finding savings on prescription medications like tizanidine—you can save up to 80% or more on prescriptions with Mira!

Opt for the generic and tablet dosage form of tizanidine whenever possible, as it is less expensive than Zanaflex or capsules. Walmart tends to offer the lowest price for tizanidine tablets among popular pharmacies. Mira can walk you through more strategies to save on prescription drugs, like using Flexible Saving Accounts (FSAs) or Patient Assistance Programs (PAPs).

Tizanidine and Medicare

Medicare Part D (Drug Coverage) covers the cost of most prescription drugs, including tizanidine. If your Medicare coverage plan covers tizanidine, your copayment will depend on your coverage stage.  

30-count Average Medicare Cost 90-count Average Medicare Cost 

Source: CMS (as of 2021)

Tizanidine FAQs

The following section will answer some frequently asked questions about tizanidine.

What exactly does tizanidine treat?

This drug is used to relax muscles and relieve spasms, cramping, seizing, and muscle tightness caused by MS or spinal injuries. It does not cure seizures but aids other treatments, like physical therapy, in improving a patient’s overall condition. Tizanidine affects your central nervous system and blocks nerve impulses sent to your brain, allowing your muscles to relax. It is a short-acting medication that can be used before daily activities that might trigger muscle spasms. 

Research has shown that tizanidine helps drugs like ketorolac and naproxen decrease inflammation and pain while reducing side effects. Ketorolac and naproxen are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that treat moderate to severe pain and reduce fevers. This research offers potential innovations for tizanidine in future pain management.

What are the pros and cons of using tizanidine?

Talk to your doctor about any concerns regarding this drug before using it.


Works quickly

Affordable generic version available

Tablets can be crushed or cut to optimize dosage

Capsules can be opened and sprinkled over food, like applesauce

Can be taken as needed

Multiple strengths available (2mg, 4mg, 6mg)

Can cause low blood pressure

Cannot be taken with Luvox (fluvoxamine) or Cipro (ciprofloxacin)

Can cause withdrawal symptoms if usage is suddenly stopped

Must be consistent with how the medication is taken (with or without food)

Higher risk for side effects for people above the age of 65 and people with liver or kidney problems

Source: GoodRx

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Should I choose tablets or capsules for this medication?

Although tizanidine in tablet form is less expensive, you may want to choose the capsule form. The tables below outline the advantages and disadvantages of both types of dosages. 

Tizanidine in Tablet Form

Long shelf life


Higher dose per tablet

Easy to split to optimize dose

Different deliveries possible: delayed release, extended-release, and immediate release

Slower absorption by the body

Unpleasant taste

Unpredictable breakdown in the digestive tract

Can irritate the gastrointestinal tract

Tizanidine in Capsule Form

Acts faster than tablets

No unpleasant taste

Better and faster absorption into the bloodstream

Slightly more effective than tablets on average


Ideal for dual-action or extended-release medication

Can react to sunlight and humidity, which can affect their effectiveness

Shorter shelf life

Lower dose per capsule

Use of animal products (ex: gelatin used in soft-shelled capsules)

Sources: GoodRx, Healthline

What are the side effects of tizanidine? 

Common side effects of tizanidine include:

  • Dizziness or lightheadedness
  • Drowsiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Fatigue
  • Sleepiness
  • Weakness
  • Constipation
  • Sore throat

Serious side effects may also occur. Call your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following health issues:

  • Nausea
  • Extreme tiredness
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising
  • Low energy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Pain in the upper right part of the stomach
  • Yellow skin or eyes
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Visual or auditory hallucinations
  • Slow heartbeat
  • Blurred or changed vision

Is tizanidine safe for children and pregnant people?

This medication is not recommended for children. It is not FDA-approved for people under the age of 18. Furthermore, tizanidine has not been adequately studied in pregnant people. Due to the lack of data, we recommend avoiding tizanidine if you are pregnant unless your doctor explicitly approves it. 

Bottom Line

Tizanidine treats muscle spasms and decreases muscle tone for disorders like MS, spinal injury, and stroke. Multiple factors affect its average cost, including the dosage form, pharmacy, and brand name.

Without insurance, you can expect to pay around $20.61 for 30 4mg tizanidine tablets and $47.04 for 90 4mg tablets. Tizanidine’s brand-name alternative, Zanaflex, is significantly more expensive. As such, the best way to reduce costs is by choosing generic tablet-form tizanidine and using discount cards at your pharmacy whenever possible.

Jasiah Hasan

Jasiah Hasan is from Portland, Oregon. She is completing her Master's in Public Health in global health policy at George Washington University. Outside of health equity and women's health, Jasiah is passionate about writing and dreams of one-day publishing poetry books.