Antidepressant Cymbalta Eases Back Pain

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by JLH, Feb 18, 2010.

  1. JLH

    JLH New Member

    Antidepressant Cymbalta Eases Back Pain

    Study Shows Drug Helps Reduce Chronic Low Back Pain

    Feb. 5, 2010 -- A drug used to treat depression, fibromyalgia, and diabetic nerve pain may also provide relief from hard-to-treat chronic low back pain.

    A new study shows people with chronic low back pain treated with Cymbalta experienced a significantly greater improvement in average pain scores than those treated with a placebo. Those treated with Cymbalta also reported a greater reduction in their perception of their low back pain and its interference in their daily lives.

    Chronic low back pain is defined as any pain in the low back that lasts more than 12 weeks. Researchers say the problem is difficult to treat because the cause is often unclear.

    "Chronic low back pain affects a significant number of people. In fact, research suggests that the incidence of the condition may be as high as 48 percent," says researcher Vladimir Skljarevski, MD, senior medical director at Lilly Research Laboratories, in a news release.

    Cymbalta is part of a class of antidepressants that affect both serotonin and norepinephrine in the brain.

    In the study, presented at the annual meeting of the American Academy of Pain Medicine in San Antonio, researchers compared the effects of treatment with 60 milligrams of Cymbalta once a day or a placebo in 401 adults with chronic low back pain.

    After 12 weeks of treatment, the results showed those treated with Cymbalta had a significantly greater reduction in average pain, as measured by the Brief Pain Inventory. They also experienced greater improvement in their own perception of their low back pain and its severity and interference with their daily lives.

    Treatment with Cymbalta also had a slight, but not significant, effect on disability scores.

    The most common significant side effects of treatment with Cymbalta were nausea and dry mouth. Fifteen percent of those treated with Cymbalta dropped out of the study due to adverse side effects compared with 5% of those who received a placebo.

    Eli Lilly and Company, which markets Cymbalta, funded and took part in the study. Cymbalta is approved by the FDA to treat major depression and generalized anxiety disorder as well as to manage diabetic nerve pain and fibromyalgia.

    By Jennifer Warner
    WebMD Health News
    Reviewed by Louise Chang, MD
  2. HeavenlyRN

    HeavenlyRN New Member

    Doesn't work for me - unfortunately!! Only thing that helps my back pain these days is heat and Oxycodone! But I still take it faithfully every day.
  3. floyd000

    floyd000 New Member

    Cymbalta can be difficult to get prescribed. Here's the key statement:

    "Eli Lilly and Company, which markets Cymbalta, funded and took part in the study."

    My bet is that a real study and placebo would have a much lower "success" rate. Personally, I found QiGong to be much more helpful.
  4. JLH

    JLH New Member

    I have been on Cymbalta for years. I did not have any trouble at all getting it prescribed. Why is it so hard to get prescribed where you live? The only thing hard to get prescribed in my area is narcotic pain pills because this area is high in deaths to to narcotic overdoses.

    I also noticed that the study was funded by Eli Lilly and Co.!

    Cymbalta has helped me, but not necessarily my back pain, but my back pain is caused by a lot of conditions that I would not expect Cymbalta to help.

    The only problem that I had with the Cymbalta is that I could not tolerate, at first, taking the 60 mg dose, which is recommended for fibro, all at once. It made me too sleepy. So, my doctor prescribed the 30 mg capsules and told me to take 1 in the morning and 1 in the evening. That eliminated the feeling so drowsy all day long.