New study to test Anticonvulsant Medication for FM

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by suzetal, May 22, 2006.

  1. suzetal

    suzetal New Member

    New Study to Test Anticonvulsant Medication for Fibromyalgia

    A new study funded by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases will measure the effectiveness of gabapentin, an anticonvulsant medication, in reducing symptoms of fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). Fibromyalgia is a chronic disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain and fatigue. Gabapentin has been found to relieve chronic pain caused by nervous system disorders, and it was recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of persistent, severe pain that can follow an episode of shingles.

    The new study will be conducted by Lesley M. Arnold, M.D., and her colleagues at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and two Boston-area sites, McLean Hospital of Harvard University and Newton-Wellesley Hospital.

    Approximately 150 study participants with FMS will be assigned randomly to take either gabapentin or placebo for a 12-week period. The medication's effectiveness will be measured using questionnaires that assess the participants' fatigue, stiffness, sleep, mood, "tender-point" pain threshold and quality of life. Tender points are specific places on the body--located on the neck, shoulders, back, hips, and upper and lower extremities-- where people with fibromyalgia often feel pain in response to slight pressure.

    Treatment of fibromyalgia usually requires a comprehensive approach. Patients may benefit from a combination of exercise, medication, and physical therapy.

    Currently, there are no medications specifically approved by the FDA for the treatment of FMS. Many people with FMS take nonsteriodal anti-inflammatory drugs, and some physicians prescribe muscle relaxants and antidepressants to treat the symptoms of FMS. Depending on the results of this study, gabapentin may become another treatment option. Available data suggest that 3 to 6 million Americans are affected by FMS. It primarily occurs in women, but children and men also may be affected.

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    Sue
  2. tonakay

    tonakay New Member

    Gabapentin is generic Neurontin, a lot of folks using this for Fm, I myself never had any luck with it though.
  3. suzetal

    suzetal New Member

    Have had luck so far.Hope it continues.

    Take care

    Sue
  4. cressida

    cressida New Member

    I started taking a low dose of gabapentin and upped it over the course of a week. It worked REALLY WELL for the pain and I thought - wow - I can do this. I wasn't so lucky though. I could feel it building up in my system and one night I woke up in horrible pain and puked my guts out throughout the night.

    It's too bad that the meds that work seem to have so many side effects that we end up having to either suffer the pain or deal with the side-effects. It's like a double-edged sword!

    I'd be curious to know if other people had this side effect. My doctor (of course) told me that there would not be any side effects! Geesh - I wish doctors had to try every medication that they doled out - before prescribing them!
  5. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I appreciate your posting this. I'm glad there is a study for antiseizure meds because for too long, these meds have been prescribed off label. It would be nice to have some research to see just how effective they are. Y'all know I consider my Klonopin to have been a God send even as I'm trying to wean off of it.

    Dr. Cheney has been a fan of Klonopin for a long time. He believes that when one achieves a certain level of healing, one can slowly wean off without problems. If I can't wean off of it, I'll figure that I still need it and will try to go off of it later down the road.

    Thanks again.

    Love, Mikie
  6. kriskwon

    kriskwon New Member

    that another poster (actually a couple) were taking this for anxiety. I'm taking this for FMS and also shingles. It definetly works to help lessen the shingle pain, and I aso believe it helps for FMS.

    One time I was so sick of taking sooo much medicane, I just gradually got off it. I (me, myself and I) figured it was one I could get off without anything to lose. I was wrong, my nerve pain (shooting pain up and down legs, burning forearms and inner tighs, stabbing in back of neck, etc) came back with a vengance!! I went back on it and now only now and then do I feel those particular pains.

    Curious what this report will say.
  7. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I read some time ago that there was a study being conducted to assess the ability of this drug to interrupt the pain signals in the brain. I never read any more about it but many docs do believe it helps with pain, especially the pain from Shingles. My specialist believes the Klonopin I take has helped with pain, even though that is not why I take it.

    Love, Mikie