Guaifenesin For Pain....Anyone?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by MamaR, Mar 15, 2007.

  1. MamaR

    MamaR New Member

    Has anyone had their doctor prescribe Guaifenesin for their FM pain?
    My Primary Doc wants me to try it. I am about to begin it.
    I hope that it helps.
    Just wondering if anyone else has had any good results from it?

  2. obrnlc

    obrnlc New Member

    hi MamaR--

    looks like at least your doc is trying to understand FM, but is a litle off base on this one! Many are, so you need to educate yourself. If "mikie" is still on here (moderator), she can fill you in a little better, or you can do a search on the top of the page.

    The guai. protocol is from a book by Dr. St. Armand and many have had excellent results, but it is not an easy or quick "fix". It involves a very dedicated process, that actually starts by INCREASING your pain, that is how you know it is working, and takes a year or more to reverse the fibro., if it works for you.

    definitely not a pain med, though. My doc always tells me that too, it's a good chance to educate your doc on the protocol. I never finished it (tried for 6 months, then when i disc. fentanyl patches, stopped it) but some on here have done really well, but it is a long haul and you MUST read the book , as there are alot of things you have to avoid (salicylates--also found in lotions, personal products, etc.) You must be very dedicated and knowledgeable to try this, my response will bump this up, others that know a whole lot more than i do might add to it.

    Good luck--L

  3. Check out typing guaifensin in the search above, Mikie and a couple others have been helped by it. Good luck.

    p.s. love your sunset photo .
  4. Dee50

    Dee50 New Member

    yes I know guai has helped me with pain but in the beginning one year ago on the Guai Protocol my pain increased with the use of guai with long cycles before it got better. The guai hit many parts of my body at the same time I was very crippled up. The bottoms of my feet became very sore and still are.
    On the positive side I'm moving around better now days and I think I would be in a wheelchair without the Guai Protocol. I'm on this Protocol for life. Not everyone gets worse before they get better but I sure did. I still have bad days but not as bad as that first year. Help this helps you. Love Dee50

  5. Dee50

    Dee50 New Member

    GUAI 03/14/07 10:35 AM


    Page last updated

    20 July 2003

    Basic Treatment Instructions

    Want these instructions mailed to you? Click here or send a blank e-mail to

    These treatment instructions were taken from the site, of the guai doctor, Dr. R. Paul St. Amand, who developed and pioneered the protocol.

    These instructions are specifically designed to include those not being mapped.

    First, rule out any other conditions and locate a doctor who understands FMS.Dr. St. Amand recommends a basic work-up that includes a blood count to rule out anemia or infections that mimic FMS. In addition include a thyroid test known as a TSH. Then be sure you tell your doctor all of the medications and/or vitamins you are taking. You will also want to discuss with your doctor whether or not you have hypoglycemia or carbohydrate intolerance. Guai treatment reverses the entire process of fibromyalgia in a more intense cyclic progressive fashion. This is due to a rapid attack on multiple areas simultaneously. A classic cycle is begun with exacerbation of symptoms followed by good days, generally within a few months. An average reversal rate is about one year for every two months at the proper dosage.

    Mapping is strongly recommended for everyone, but particularly if you do not experience a clear response of exacerbation of symptoms during titration of dose, or don't have clear cycles within a few months. Without mapping it's impossible to give any guarantee whether a dose is too low or high, or if one is blocking. It is suggested you approach a physiotherapist, chiropractor, massage therapist, etc., (as most physicians are not used to palpating the muscular lesions that we call the "lumps and bumps" of fibromyalgia), with Dr St Amand's mapping video (see FibroMeet for details on how to order.)

    Everyone should begin Guaifenesin at 300 mg. twice per day. Cycling can begin any time before the seventh day if this dose is sufficient and you aren't blocked byproducts with salicylates. You should feel significantly but tolerably worse.Statistics show that 300 mg.twice daily (approx 12 hours apart) suffices for 20 percent of patients.

    If no severe exacerbation of symptoms has begun in that time, increase to 600 mg twice per day. Dr St Amand holds his patients at 600 mg. twice daily for three more weeks, until he sees the patient again and re-maps. This dose suffices for 70 percent of people.Those who are NOT being mapped would do well to hold at 600 mg. twice daily for a month rather than the 3 weeks. If you do have to raise your dose again it would be best to hold for one month minimum each time.

    If you raise the dose of medication too fast you will likely end up in too much pain or with too much exacerbation of symptoms. Plus you will never know what your proper dose is and put yourself through a more severe reversal than is necessary.

    If the patient has not had a worse time of it at a month on the1200 mg dosage, Dr St Amand would then raise her/him to 1800 mg. daily. By this point, 90 percent of people will have found their proper cycling dose. The higher dosages of 2400 mg on up will only be needed by 10 percent of patients.

    For the higher dosages, when the amount of pills for a day equals an odd number, Dr. St. Amand suggests people take the extra pill in the morning, to avoid splitting pills (just for convenience). He usually titrates dosage by 600 mg, but if you prefer to raise by 300 mg that is okay.

    Roughly 10 percent of patients have no severe symptoms during reversal. On occasion someone might feel no different but if mapped may have made remarkable progress. Some of these people have a variably high pain threshold and don't see much happening despite great success.

    Another minority of patients progress very slowly with practically no good days over a long period of time. In most cases this indicates the person is at too high or low a dose, or is blocking, but it can also just be their particular pattern of reversal.

    Apart from 6 patients who cycle on 4800 mg per day, the highest dose Dr St Amand has had to use on his patients is 3600 mg daily. A very few patients have cycled on only 300 mg daily. Reversal cycles are generally intensified symptoms of whatever YOU have already experienced. For example: If your primary complaint is fatigue or nerves, this will get worse. If it is pain, this will get worse. You should just feel worse. It's really that simple. In addition, because the guaifenesin makes one's symptoms more intense, certain things which were not apparent or bothersome before beginning the protocol, may become so.

    At each level, too, it is recommended you take an INVENTORY of your PRODUCT usage to ensure you are not blocked by anything. Refer to the Salicylates portion of this Web site.

    Before beginning treatment it is imperative to make sure one is allowing in no source of salicylates. It is important that you use no aspirin compounds, since these completely block the effects of guaifenesin. The greatest source of patient error lies in the use of aspirin-related compounds, salicylate or salicylic acid, which interfere with guaifenesin at the kidney level. Skin readily absorbs these compounds. Many pain medications contain aspirin or have the word 'salicylate' or 'salicylic acid' as part of the contents. You cannot use these. Tylenol, Advil, Darvon and other anti-inflammatory drugs are OK.

    ALL plants manufacture salicylates, and many do so in large quantities. Herbal medications, cosmetics and skin creams or lotions containing herbs are also high in salicylates and must be avoided. Among others, these include aloe, camphor, castor oil, witch hazel, ginseng and plant-derived vitamins. You must read all ingredients contained in anything you apply to your skin. These warnings do not apply to foods, including herbs and spices used in cooking even though some contain salicylates. Apparently, the amount is insufficient for blocking because of the action of the digestive tract and because the liver processes small amounts by a process called glycination. There are no restrictions on diet, unless you also have hypoglycemia.

    Assume you are very sensitive and be meticulous in conducting your search for salicylates in topicals, supplements and medications,and be assiduous in eliminating them, because, especially in the early days of the treatment, it is almost impossible to tell physically whether or not one is blocking the guaifenesin. Further along in the treatment when you have begun to experience long periods of good days, blocking may be easier to detect.

    Actually the process is simple. Some people make it very complicated, perhaps because they want to bargain and not give up this or that. Those who are very sick consider it no big deal to give up aloe in lipstick or to use one sunblock instead of another.

    Once you get well, you'll never want to go back!


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  6. MamaR

    MamaR New Member

    I have been in such pain today that it is unreal! All I could do was collapse after my hubby gave a toradol shot (the only fast pain relief prescribed). It only takes the edge off anymore. I hurt in every joint, it seems! Then the pain in my feet and hips are unreal... and I have this COPD to deal with. I have bladder issues and irritable bowel.
    I dread to go to bed because I know how I will wake up! I have these pressure points that are like stabbing pains. I really think i am the worst that i have ever been.

    I am sorry to complain, but I can't even concentrate on reading now. I will when I can. I truly appreciate all your messages. I just can't see where this Guaifensin is doing anything. I will have to call my doc on Monday.

    Thanks so much again for the info. I will be back to read up soon.

  7. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    Lots of good advice here. As mentioned, I've been on the Guai for almost seven years now and consider my FMS symptoms reversed, for the most part. The Guai isn't a cure but it's the next best thing if it works for you. It was about a year before I was able to give up my Morphine for pain. The Guai will initially usually increase pain.

    My feeling is that the Guai has almost no side effects for most so I had nothing to lose and everything to gain by trying it. I'm really glad I did.

    You can do a search here on Guai and read our old posts. Good luck.

    Love, Mikie
  8. MamaR

    MamaR New Member

    Thanks so much for the info. I remember seeing the info about quai....but never put it together with the same medication. Anyway, I don't know what lies ahead right now. I am the worst that I have ever been with pain. It is so bad that I can barely get out of bed. I am really having a lot of nerve pain also. I am going one more route. I am going to see a neurologist. I would love to be able to stay with the guai....but right now I can't stand this pain.
    I appreciate all of the advice on here.

  9. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I was seeing a pain specialist even when I started the Guai because it takes time for the Guai to work. The Morphine helped to decrease the Guai flares so I could tolerate them. Eventually, I needed the Morphine less and less. Starting out slowly on the Guai is a good idea until one knows what dose will cause a Guai flare. The Guai flares are like good news/bad news. They mean the Guai is working but they do increase pain temporarily.

    Good luck and let us know how you are doing.

    Love, Mikie
  10. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    There is renewed interest in the Guai so am bumping this.

    Love, Mikie
  11. bigmh

    bigmh New Member

    Hi Mari...I can feel for you! I, too, have pain as the primary symptom. I have been on guai for a year, and have recently started the hypoglycemic diet. The diet is really helping with the pain!

    Have you been to There is a great web board there that you can sign up for. Some people actually have less pain when they start guai. And if you haven't tried it, I would give the diet there a shot. I was skeptical and also didn't want to give up my treats!, but I am gradually improving...such a relief!

    Guai is the only treatment I have found that actually reverses the symptoms of I am sticking to it. I don't have anything to lose.

    Good luck to you...hope this helps! Ann

    PS I take methadone and baclofen for the pain. As Mikie said, we can take pain meds until the guai reverses the FMS and the pain lets up. I am taking a few less pain pills, though, and I'm so thankful!

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