Study Shows Melatonin Associated With Fibromyalgia Pain Improvement

Study Shows Melatonin Associated With Fibromyalgia Pain Improvement

A recent study entitled “Melatonin analgesia is associated with improvement of the descending endogenous pain-modulating system in fibromyalgia: a phase II, randomized, double-dummy, controlled trial“, published in the BMC Pharmacology and Toxicology journal, observed that melatonin alone or in combination with amitriptyline significantly reduced pain in fibromyalgia patients.

Fibromyalgia is a disease characterized by widespread pain lasting for months to years (usually throughout the life of an affected patient) and a painful response to pressure in various specific body areas. Furthermore patients often also have stiffness of the body, fatigue, sleep disturbances, anxiety and depression. It estimated to affect as much as 2 to 8% of the population with 7 to 9 times more women affected compared to men.

Sleep disorders and alteration of the circadian rhythm (the physiological oscillation of body metabolism through the 24 hours) are very common in fibromyalgia patients. Melatonin is one of the main hormones in the body responsible for circadian rhythm synchronization. There is some evidence that melatonin treatment improves different types of chronic long-lasting pain, namely inflammatory and neuropathic pain.

Related: Read more about the latest chronic pain and pain management news.

As the available evidence on melatonin treatment efficacy for fibromyalgia is sparse, researchers from Hospital de Clínicas de Porto Alegre, Brazil, conducted a randomized clinical study with 63 patients. In their study, patients with confirmed fibromyalgia were randomized to three groups: amitriptyline 25mg (standard treatment), melatonin 10 mg at bedtime, and melatonin 10 mg + amitriptyline 25 mg.

Using the visual analogue scale investigators asked patients to measure pain in a scale of 0 to 10 after six weeks. Results showed that both melatonin alone and melatonin plus amitriptyline were better than amitriptyline alone for fibromyalgia pain treatment. Moreover, the group receiving a combination of the two treatments had better treatment efficacy and the highest decrease in pain symptoms.

Fibromyalgia patients suffer from a lack of inhibition of musculoskeletal pain, lower pain threshold and an altered pain modulation system function. In the patients under study these modulation systems were analyzed using the brain-derived neurotrophic factor and other additional exams. Importantly, melatonin was shown to further increase the function of these pain modulating systems when compared to amitriptyline.

There is a need for better fibromyalgia treatments as most therapies lack efficacy and/or have several adverse effects. In the future, melatonin might be a more efficient alternative to currently used treatments.

6 comments

  1. kathleen kalthoff says:

    I’ve heard and tried melatonin to help the body rest with fibromyalgia. And now back on amitryptylin 25mg. I’ll be happy too try this theory out.melatonin helps the nerves calm down at night,plus helps me rest to sleep at night. So we’ll see how it helps.

  2. Sue says:

    There are ao many ‘studies’,and I cant dind a doctor to help with my fibromyalgia much less treat it. I am at tbe end of my rope….

    • Don’t give up Sue I felt that way when I was suffering pain and depression. I chanced upon an article from Harvard Health about TaiChi and its effect on helping with fibromyalgia. I had trained in TaiChi some years previously and had let it go whilst being caught up in a horrible divorce and retrenchment from my job. I looked at the pain areas and realised I had Fibromyalgia.So I went and saw my doctor and told him my findings and he put me on nortriptyline 25mg.Side effects are a bit horrible at first but they settle down after a while and I’m also taking melatonin just before bed and that’s been a big help in calming down the gut activity and restlessness. I have also got back into my TaiChi form and although it’s a bit rusty the state of mind while doing the form is a great help too.Put it out to the Universe Sue and it will bring you what you need. Kindest regards Fletch

    • Sue says:

      Sorry to hear your having trouble finding a Doctor to help you. A lot of Dictors only started taking Fibromyalgia seriously in the last 15 years as being a real disease. I was hit by a drunk driver at the age of 16, over the years I have had 37 surgeries, it took a long time for the Doctors to diagnose me with Fibromyalgia and not just the trauma. I have a very rare case of Fibromyalgia that I lose anywhere between 150 to 500 calories from sitting or sleeping, due to my muscles. I have lost 45 pounds in 5 months without trying and yes they checked for everything else it could be. When I was first diagnosed I was given Lyrica and almost died from it. I receive injections into my muscles about 8 plus a month from my neck to lower back. My muscles bend the needles most of the time, I’m on pain killers and muscle relaxers. I do take Fentenyl patches I was on 25 mg but after the weight loss I’m take 12.5 mg now. I take extra vitamins to help with my energy levels but there getting worse. Over the last month I have had continuous headaches from my need muscles it’s draining me more. I just had 5 injections in my neck on the 4th and my headaches are getting worse. My Doctor and I were just taking if they could find a new medication that could really work, the drug companies would make a furtune. Unfortunately no one has found a cure or even close yet. If we can get a group of people with severe Fibromyalgia together and help push awareness for us who are suffering I do believe it would help. They need to do genetic testing to find out which road to follow for a cure to work best. Right now Fibromyalgia is a guessing game and unfortunately we are the victims of there guessing. If we’re in such pain there’s certain things we’re not going to say no to. But I’m ready for a cure I want to live everyday knowing I want to get up and go do something. Instead of hoping I’ll have a good day to go to the store. They have made break throughs with Cancer, AIDS, they have walks for alztimers. We need serious awareness Fibromyalgia is real and not in are heads. A cure needs to be in are future of years not decades. We need to draw attention to us and show people how bad Fibromyalgia really is. It’s not a commercial stating if we take this drug and stay active we will feel so much better. People believe that only we know and most Dictors know it’s not true. Let’s bring awareness and make a difference, we don’t need antidepressants we need a cure, we bummed because we’re in pain.

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