Study Shows Fibromyalgia Patients Find Combination Therapy a More Effective Pain Treatment

Study Shows Fibromyalgia Patients Find Combination Therapy a More Effective Pain Treatment
Canada's Queen's University scientist Ian Gilron has found a more effective way to treat fibromyalgia by combining Lyrica (pregabalin), an anticonvulsant drug, with Cymbalta (duloxetine), an antidepressant. The study, “Combination of pregabalin with duloxetine for fibromyalgia: a randomized controlled trial,” was published in the journal Pain. The results demonstrated that the combination of the two drugs can safely improve outcomes in fibromyalgia, including not only pain relief but also physical function and overall quality of life. "Previous evidence supports added benefits with some drug combinations in fibromyalgia," Gilron said in a news release. "We are very excited to present the first evidence demonstrating superiority of a duloxetine-pregabalin combination over either drug alone." Fibromyalgia is a clinical syndrome characterized by chronic widespread pain. Symptoms include sleep disturbance, depression, fatigue, and cognitive dysfunction. "The condition affects about 1.5 to 5 percent of Canadians -- more than twice as many women as men. It can have a devastating on the lives of patients and their families," Gilron said. "Current treatments for fibromyalgia are either ineffective or intolerable for many patients." Evidence supports a diverse array of treatments for fibromyalgia including exercise, pharmacological, physical, psychological, and other therapies. The anticonvulsant Lyrica and the antidepressant Cymbalta are two newer pharmacological therapies that are widely used to treat fibromyalgia. Lyrica and Cymbalta are thought to reduce pain by different pharmacological actions, thereby providing a mechanistic rationale for combining the two. The new study compared a Lyrica-Cymbalta combination to each drug individually. Usi
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