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Medications for Fibromyalgia

What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a condition characterized by pain in your muscles and fibrous tissues (such as the tendons and ligaments), accompanied by fatigue, low mood, and sleep problems. A person with fibromyalgia can experience a wide range of symptoms, and symptoms may vary from person to person.

The cause of fibromyalgia is unknown. For many years it was thought that it was psychologically based but research has found that injury, infection, surgery, or illness may trigger the condition. Sometimes symptoms accumulate over time without a single triggering event. There are also indications that hereditary factors are involved in the development of fibromyalgia as it can occur in several members of one family.

Common symptoms of fibromyalgia include:

  • Widespread muscle pain
  • Widespread joint pain
  • Stiffness
  • Tender areas on various parts of the body (such as elbows, knees, head) that hurt when touched
  • Fatigue
  • Problems sleeping or staying asleep
  • Cognitive difficulties (such as an impaired ability to focus, memory problems, difficulty concentrating – often referred to as “fibro fog”).

Diagnosis of Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is difficult to diagnose because the symptoms mimic other disorders and there are no visible signs (like signs of inflammation or joint lumps) or definitive laboratory tests. It may also coexist with other conditions such as:

  • Migraine and other types of headache
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Painful bladder syndrome
  • Periodic Limb Movement Disorder
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • Temporomandibular joint disorders (pain in the jaw joint and in the muscles that control jaw movement).

A fibromyalgia diagnosis is often made when a patient has had 3 previous months of unexplained body-wide pain and at least 11 of 18 tender points in specific locations.

Fibromyalgia Treatment

There is no cure for fibromyalgia, but the condition can be managed using a variety of measures.  A holistic approach should be taken as not all symptoms can or should be treated with medications. Learning about the condition and modifying your attitude and behavior towards the condition also helps.

Nonpharmacological treatments include:

  • Acupuncture
  • Dietary changes
  • Education
  • Homeopathy
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
  • Regular exercise
  • Stress management
  • Yoga.


Many different types of medications have also been used in the treatment of fibromyalgia. Treatments usually involve trial and error, as what works for one person may not work for another. Examples of medications that may benefit some symptoms of fibromyalgia include:

  • Acetaminophen
  • Antidepressants (eg, tricyclic antidepressants, SNRIs, SSRIs)
  • Capsaicin
  • Cyclobenzaprine
  • Duloxetine
  • Gabapentin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Pramipexole
  • Pregabalin
  • Tramadol.

Drugs Used to Treat Fibromyalgia

The following list of medications are in some way related to, or used in the treatment of this condition.

Drug name Rx / OTC Pregnancy CSA Alcohol Reviews Rating Popularity
Lyrica C 5 X 320 reviews
6.4

Generic name: pregabalin systemic

Drug class: gamma-aminobutyric acid analogs

For consumers: dosage, interactions, side effects

For professionals: AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

gabapentin Off Label C N X 169 reviews
6.9

Generic name: gabapentin systemic

Drug class: gamma-aminobutyric acid analogs

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

Cymbalta C N X 237 reviews
6.3

Generic name: duloxetine systemic

Drug class: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors

For consumers: dosage, interactions, side effects

For professionals: AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Savella C N X 322 reviews
6.6

Generic name: milnacipran systemic

Drug class: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors

For consumers: dosage, interactions, side effects

For professionals: AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

tramadol Off Label C 4 X 139 reviews
7.4

Generic name: tramadol systemic

Drug class: narcotic analgesics

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

cyclobenzaprine Off Label B N X 52 reviews
7.7

Generic name: cyclobenzaprine systemic

Drug class: skeletal muscle relaxants

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

duloxetine C N X 268 reviews
6.2

Generic name: duloxetine systemic

Brand name:  Cymbalta

Drug class: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

amitriptyline C N X 100 reviews
6.6

Generic name: amitriptyline systemic

Drug class: tricyclic antidepressants

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

trazodone Off Label C N X 34 reviews
7.3

Generic name: trazodone systemic

Brand names:  Desyrel, Desyrel Dividose

Drug class: phenylpiperazine antidepressants

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

pregabalin C 5 X 364 reviews
6.4

Generic name: pregabalin systemic

Brand name:  Lyrica

Drug class: gamma-aminobutyric acid analogs

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

meloxicam Off Label C N X 27 reviews
7.4

Generic name: meloxicam systemic

Drug class: Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

guaifenesin Off Label C N 92 reviews
8.5

Generic name: guaifenesin systemic

Drug class: expectorants

For consumers: dosage,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

Topamax Off Label D N X 23 reviews
6.1

Generic name: topiramate systemic

Drug class: carbonic anhydrase inhibitor anticonvulsants

For consumers: dosage, interactions, side effects

For professionals: AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

armodafinil Off Label C 4 16 reviews
8.6

Generic name: armodafinil systemic

Drug class: CNS stimulants

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

Desyrel Off Label C N X 9 reviews
6.9

Generic name: trazodone systemic

Drug class: phenylpiperazine antidepressants

For consumers: dosage, interactions, side effects

For professionals: Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

nabilone Off Label C 2 X 9 reviews
8.8

Generic name: nabilone systemic

Drug class: miscellaneous antiemetics

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph

Off Label: Yes

prednisone C N 53 reviews
8.1

Generic name: prednisone systemic

Drug class: glucocorticoids

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

milnacipran C N X 333 reviews
6.7

Generic name: milnacipran systemic

Brand name:  Savella

Drug class: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

naltrexone Off Label C N X 45 reviews
7.5

Generic name: naltrexone systemic

Drug class: antidotes, drugs used in alcohol dependence

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

topiramate Off Label D N X 41 reviews
6.2

Generic name: topiramate systemic

Brand names:  Topamax, Topamax Sprinkle

Drug class: carbonic anhydrase inhibitor anticonvulsants

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

venlafaxine Off Label C N X 47 reviews
6.6

Generic name: venlafaxine systemic

Drug class: serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

escitalopram Off Label C N X 17 reviews
8.1

Generic name: escitalopram systemic

Drug class: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

metaxalone Off Label N N X 23 reviews
8.2

Generic name: metaxalone systemic

Brand name:  Metaxall

Drug class: skeletal muscle relaxants

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

fluoxetine Off Label C N X 6 reviews
6.5

Generic name: fluoxetine systemic

Drug class: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph, Prescribing Information

Off Label: Yes

sodium oxybate Off Label B 3 X 9 reviews
8.0

Generic name: sodium oxybate systemic

Drug class: miscellaneous anxiolytics, sedatives and hypnotics

For consumers: dosage, interactions,

For professionals: A-Z Drug Facts, AHFS DI Monograph

Off Label: Yes

Alternative treatments for Fibromyalgia

The following products are considered to be alternative treatments or natural remedies for Fibromyalgia. Their efficacy may not have been scientifically tested to the same degree as the drugs listed in the table above. However there may be historical, cultural or anecdotal evidence linking their use to the treatment of Fibromyalgia.

Learn more about Fibromyalgia

IBM Watson Micromedex

Symptoms and treatments

Drugs.com Health Center

Mayo Clinic Reference

ICD-10 CM Clinical Codes (External)

Legend

Rx Prescription Only
OTC Over the Counter
Rx/OTC Prescription or Over the Counter
Off Label This medication may not be approved by the FDA for the treatment of this condition.
Pregnancy Category
A Adequate and well-controlled studies have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus in the first trimester of pregnancy (and there is no evidence of risk in later trimesters).
B Animal reproduction studies have failed to demonstrate a risk to the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women.
C Animal reproduction studies have shown an adverse effect on the fetus and there are no adequate and well-controlled studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant use in pregnant women despite potential risks.
D There is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience or studies in humans, but potential benefits may warrant use in pregnant women despite potential risks.
X Studies in animals or humans have demonstrated fetal abnormalities and/or there is positive evidence of human fetal risk based on adverse reaction data from investigational or marketing experience, and the risks involved in use in pregnant women clearly outweigh potential benefits.
N FDA has not classified the drug.
Controlled Substances Act (CSA) Schedule
N Is not subject to the Controlled Substances Act.
1 Has a high potential for abuse. Has no currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. There is a lack of accepted safety for use under medical supervision.
2 Has a high potential for abuse. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States or a currently accepted medical use with severe restrictions. Abuse may lead to severe psychological or physical dependence.
3 Has a potential for abuse less than those in schedules 1 and 2. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to moderate or low physical dependence or high psychological dependence.
4 Has a low potential for abuse relative to those in schedule 3. It has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to those in schedule 3.
5 Has a low potential for abuse relative to those in schedule 4. Has a currently accepted medical use in treatment in the United States. Abuse may lead to limited physical dependence or psychological dependence relative to those in schedule 4.
Alcohol
X Interacts with Alcohol.

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Further information

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