Pain Management Finds: Naltrexone Is A Wonder Drug For Fibromyalgia Patients

Pain Management Finds: Naltrexone Is A Wonder Drug For Fibromyalgia Patients

 

By Donna Gregory Burch,

The pain in Janice Hollander’s legs was so excruciating that she wanted to cut them off. Diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2013, she’d progressed through the normal litany of prescription drugs doled out by physicians – Lyrica, Cymbalta, gabapentin, muscle relaxers and narcotics – all without finding relief.

 

Then she happened to catch an episode of the Dr. Oz Show where a guest discussed using low-dose naltrexone (LDN) as a treatment for chronic pain. A few days later, she convinced her doctor to write a prescription and took her first dose of LDN.

 

“After about seven days, my pain lessened,” said Hollander of Michigan. “It lessened by 10 or 20 percent. That was huge! Even just that little bit of lessening was huge.”

 

After four weeks, the depression that had been stymying her for years lifted. At six weeks, she saw a noticeable increase in her energy levels. Her brain fog improved, and her memory returned.

 

Hollander has been taking LDN for about year now, and she’s probably one of its biggest fans within the fibromyalgia community. She regularly shares her success story in online support groups.

 

Hollander still has fibromyalgia symptoms, but they are more manageable thanks to LDN.

 

“I would say my leg pain is pretty much gone,” she said. “[LDN] has completely changed my life. I don’t know that I would be here today if it wasn’t for it. I don’t think I could go for another year in the misery I was in.”

 

A growing number of fibromyalgia sufferers like Hollander are finding relief using LDN. It’s an unusual discovery since LDN is best known in the addiction treatment community. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved LDN to treat addiction to certain opiate drugs in 1984.

Image result for Naltrexone for fibromyalgia

Source: Medical Cure USA

 

A little more below details about this drug:

Description

This medication is used to prevent people who have been addicted to certain drugs (opiates) from taking them again. It is used as part of a complete treatment program for drug abuse (e.g., compliance monitoring, counseling, behavioral contract, lifestyle changes). This medication must not be used in people currently taking opiates, including methadone. Doing so can cause sudden withdrawal symptoms.

Naltrexone belongs to a class of drugs known as opiate antagonists. It works in the brain to prevent opiate effects (e.g., feelings of well-being, pain relief). It also decreases the desire to take opiates.

This medication is also used to treat alcohol abuse. It can help people drink less alcohol or stop drinking altogether. It also decreases the desire to drink alcohol when used with a treatment program that includes counseling, support, and lifestyle changes.

Dosage

Take this medication by mouth with or without food, usually 50 milligrams once daily or as directed by your doctor. This medication may be given as part of a program where a health care professional will watch you take the medication. In this case, your doctor may order a higher dose (100-150 milligrams) to be taken every 2-3 days to make it easier to schedule clinic visits. Naltrexone may be taken with food or antacids if stomach upset occurs.

A urine test should be done to check for recent opiate drug use. Your doctor may give you another medication (naloxone challenge test) to check for opiate use. Do not use any opiates for at least 7 days before starting naltrexone. You may need to stop certain opiate drugs (such as methadone) 10 to 14 days before starting naltrexone.

Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Your doctor may start you at a lower dose and monitor you for any side effects or withdrawal symptoms before increasing your dose. Take this medication as directed. Do not increase your dose, take it more often, or stop taking it without your doctor’s approval.

Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day.

Tell your doctor if you start using drugs or alcohol again.

Side Effects

Less common:

  • Skin rash

Rare

  • Abdominal or stomach pain (severe)
  • blurred vision, aching, burning, or swollen eyes
  • chest pain
  • confusion
  • discomfort while urinating or frequent urination
  • fever
  • hallucinations or seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there
  • itching
  • mental depression or other mood or mental changes
  • ringing or buzzing in the ears
  • shortness of breath
  • swelling of the face, feet, or lower legs
  • weight gain

 

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