Fibromyalgia is a common condition characterized by long-term, body-wide pain and tender points in joints, muscles, tendons, and other soft tissues. Fibromyalgia has also been linked to fatigue, morning stiffness, sleep problems, headaches, numbness in hands and feet, depression, and anxiety.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

New Medication for Fibromyalgia Sufferers

I try to keep  on top of anything new in the studies of fibromyalgia because I was diagnosed with this illness over 2 years ago even though I am pretty certain I have suffered from this chronic disease for much longer.

There is a new drug being tested for fibromyalgia called Mirapex (Pramipexole). It is a treatment normally reserved for Parkinson's Disease Patients, but they are finding that there are some similarities between the two in regards to muscle control.

Here's the information on this drug from NCBI (National Center for Biotechnology Information:

Pramipexole is used alone or with other medications to treat the symptoms of Parkinson's disease (PD; a disorder of the nervous system that causes difficulties with movement, muscle control, and balance), including shaking of parts of the body, stiffness, slowed movements, and problems with balance. Pramipexole is also used to treat restless legs syndrome (RLS; a condition that causes discomfort in the legs and a strong urge to move the legs, especially at night and when sitting or lying down). Pramipexole is in a class of medications called dopamine agonists. It works by acting in place of dopamine, a natural substance in the brain that is needed to control movement.

Here is a story about a woman who suffers from fibromyalgia who has tried this treatment that I found on the internet from Channel 8 Eyewitness News:

Jean Fuller Has fibromyalgia.

"It was real hard to stoop over like this and weed."

A condition called fibromyalgia caused chronic pain in her muscles and joints.

Jean Fuller "So much pain in the muscles of my arms that I would have to quit."
But thanks to a new treatment, Jean has her life back.

Jean Fuller "If I couldn't take it, I think I'd cry."

For five years, Jean has taken the drug mirapex every night. Now, research confirms what she already knows -- it can significantly reduce pain and fatigue in patients with fibromyalgia.

Andrew Holman, M.D. Rheumatologist
Pacific Rheumatology Associates, Inc.
Seattle, WA

"It's completely transformed the treatment of fibromyalgia." A new study shows mirapex reduces fibromyalgia pain better than any other drug.

Andrew Holman, M.D. "The number of pages I get after hours, the misery the patients have has diminished dramatically."

Nearly half of patients who took mirapex reported 42-percent less pain compared to only 14-percent of those on placebo. Overall, 82 percent of patients on mirapex had some improvement in pain. 

Andrew Holman, M.D."This is the medicine that may provide a completely new way of approaching fibromyalgia."

Instead of inducing sleep like current drugs do, mirapex lets you sleep by stimulating dopamine receptors. That also decreases pain.

Side effects from mirapex are mild and include nausea and weight loss. Mirapex was designed to stimulate dopamine receptor production in Parkinson's patients. Researchers discovered it could help fibromyaliga patients by accident.

I am not promoting Mirapex whatsoever, but I am trying to keep you informed of any new research on fibromyalgia. 

Do your research and talk to your doctor to see if this is an avenue you might like to try.

I know there are many of you out there that have very little relief from the pain that this illness causes either because your body can't tolerate the medication or the side effects are too great to stay on a pain medication.

I will continue to keep on top of this and share what I learn.

Until next time :)


Anonymous said...

It actually has a side affect I LIKE - weight loss! That's a change!

T @ Poppy Place said...

Sounds good.

Although I tend to take much of what Holman says with a pinch of salt. T. :)

Christine Burgess said...

I wish it were that simple. I have a feeling the other side effects were left out in this article. But if weight loss is true, I would bet a few may try it.

Judloved said...
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