Fibromyalgia7 Common Medications for Fibromyalgia Pain

7 Common Medications for Fibromyalgia Pain

Fibromyalgia can be difficult to treat because symptoms and response to the treatment vary from person to person. To date, no universally effective treatment for fibromyalgia has been found. Medication does not provide a cure for this disease. However, there are several common medications for fibromyalgia that can effectively relieve your symptoms and improve your quality of life.

Currently there are 3 drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for fibromyalgia:

There are several other medications that are commonly prescribed alone or in combination. They work to relieve pain and other fibromyalgia symptoms such as fatigue and muscle stiffness.

Antidepressants – Medications for Fibromyalgia

box of antidepressants for Fibromyalgia
Believe it or not, antidepressants aren’t used exclusively to treat depression. They are actually among the most common treatment strategies to relieve fibromyalgia pain.

Antidepressants act by increasing the activity of chemicals called neurotransmitters in the brain. Neurotransmitters coordinate the transmission of signals between nerve cells. This, in turn, affects every system in your body, can improve sleep and energy and influence the perception of pain. People with fibromyalgia usually have low levels of neurotransmitters. It is believed that raising those levels may ease the pain associated with this condition.

There are different categories of antidepressants. Each one of them works in a different way:

  • Tricyclic antidepressants: amitriptyline (Elavil) and nortriptyline (Pamelor)
  • Serotonin-noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs): milnacipran (Savella), duloxetine (Cymbalta), and venlafaxine (Effexor)
  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs): fluoxetine (Prozac)

Anticonvulsants – Medications for Fibromyalgia

Anticonvulsants (also known as antiepileptics) were originally developed to treat epilepsy. But research has shown that they can be effective in people with fibromyalgia as well.

They can:

  • slow down nerve signals from your muscles to your brain
  • reduce pain and relieve muscle spasms

The most commonly used anticonvulsants for fibromyalgia are pregabalin (Lyrica) and gabapentin (Neurontin).

Muscle relaxants

Muscle relaxants Fibromyalgia

Muscle relaxants are used to relieve muscle tension. Your doctor may prescribe it to you if your muscles are frequently tight or stiff. Since they also have sedating properties, muscle relaxants can also help you sleep better. They are typically taken at bedtime.

An example of a muscle relaxant for fibromyalgia is cyclobenzaprine (Flexeril). Some benzodiazepines such as diazepam (Valium) also have a muscle relaxant action.


Benzodiazepines are usually used in the treatment of anxiety. They can:

  • be used to induce sleep
  • help you relax by slowing down your central nervous system

Some of them, such as diazepam (Valium) and clonazepam (Klonopin) also have the ability to relax your muscles. They are usually prescribed for short periods of time.

Since fibromyalgia pain can lead to sleep disturbance, getting quality and restorative sleep can be helpful for you. A good night’s sleep can decrease widespread pain and help you achieve better daytime functioning.


tramadol Fibromyalgia medication

Tramadol (Ultram) is an analgesic that acts in the central nervous system. It binds to receptors in your brain called µ-opioid receptors. It is also:

Tramadol also increases the action of two neurotransmitters: serotonin and norepinephrine. It’s similar to antidepressants in that way. These two mechanisms work together to change your perception of pain.

Opioid analgesics

Opioid analgesics for Fibromyalgia

Opioid analgesics, also called narcotics, are a class of pain relievers. These include morphine (MS Contin) and oxycodone (OxyContin).

Opioids can be helpful when there is severe fibromyalgia pain. However, their use for pain management of this condition is controversial. They are highly addictive and should only be used when other medications are not effective. Additionally, opioid analgesics don’t address the musculoskeletal problems associated with fibromyalgia.

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs)

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs for Fibromyalgia

Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are effective for relief of pain caused by inflammation. Fibromyalgia is not caused by inflammation. However, the use is of NSAIDs to relieve fibromyalgia pain is prevalent.

NSAIDs such as ibuprofen and aspirin are not effective in treating symptoms of fibromyalgia when used alone. But they may reduce pain when used in conjunction with another fibromyalgia medication.

Your stomach may become irritated on these medications. Be sure to take them with food. Avoid using them in large doses or over long periods of time.

Your fibromyalgia treatment plan usually requires a combined approach. Some patients do not respond to a single drug. Your doctor may prescribe combination therapy to get you maximum pain relief.

The aim of your fibromyalgia treatment is to relieve pain symptoms in the most effective way. This may differ from person to person. Your health care team will choose the best option for you. Before starting these common medications for fibromyalgia (or any medication):

  • Discuss medications for fibromyalgia with your doctor
  • Be open and honest about your concerns
  • Ask questions
  • Be sure to talk about any other medications you are taking
Pain Cream SHOP
  1. I’ve been on amnitripline for 30 years. I choked on tablets last week and burned all way down my throat. Been three weeks still not healed. Why can’t they coat them. Going of them now will take three months to do it

  2. Great article.
    Yes fibromyalgia really does differ from person to person.
    I have been newly diagnosed and the antidepressants and antiinflammatory meds are working to calm my flares.
    Yes food is important to take with these, or it can been very painful for the stomach.

    • Hi, for me, it is invaluable to help with sleep in my case. I only try to take one in the evening around 7.30pm. I find you the time I’m ready to go to bed I am usually yawning and normally get to sleep quite quickly. If I forget, I do know about it. Getting to sleep is much harder. I try not to take more than the one as when I have taken two it’s harder to go back to the one. Hope this helps.

  3. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia years ago after long treatment with various drugs (illness progress whole that time). I started on Worldherbsclinic Fibromyalgia HERBAL REMEDY called FB FORMULA two months ago. After THREE MONTHS of usage my Fibromyalgia stopped progressing and was totally reversed. WORLDHERBSCLINIC FB FORMULA is everything to me and the best for Fibromyalgia patients !!


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