Lyrica a Better Choice Than Opioids for Harnessing Fibromyalgia Pain and its Consequences

Lyrica a Better Choice Than Opioids for Harnessing Fibromyalgia Pain and its Consequences
Lyrica (pregabalin), when used on its own for fibromyalgia, is superior to opioids in reducing pain and improving pain interference in daily life, finds a study sponsored by Pfizer. The analysis, which included 1,421 fibromyalgia patients, showed that those using Lyrica doses recommended for fibromyalgia treatment had the best outcomes, suggesting that many patients should increase their doses to reach recommended levels. Pfizer and ProCare Systems conducted the study, Interpreting the Effectiveness of Opioids and Pregabalin for Pain Severity, Pain Interference, and Fatigue in Fibromyalgia Patients,” which took aim at the notion that — despite little evidence of their effectivity — opioids are the most commonly prescribed drugs for fibromyalgia. To examine how different treatments affect pain and related outcomes in fibromyalgia patients, the research team turned to information from the ProCare Systems network of chronic pain clinics in Michigan. All patients received Lyrica or opioids alone or in combination, and had been through several pain health assessments, including pain characteristics, physical function and psychosocial function. The team divided the patients into different groups based on their average morphine equivalent dose or average Lyrica dose. Patients were followed between 56 and 365 days. Nearly 78 percent of them were women — typical of fibromyalgia in the real world. Findings, published in the journal Pain Practice, showed that only 3.4 percent of patien
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