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Duloxetine Appears Effective in Treating Patients With Fibromyalgia Syndrome


    Patients with fibromyalgia syndrome appear to obtain better pain control with the selective serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor duloxetine. Researchers attempted to determine whether treatment with duloxetine 120 mg daily for 3 months could reduce pain severity in patients with fibromyalgia syndrome.

    "Duloxetine 60 mg daily and 120 mg daily were superior to placebo during the 3-month treatment period on the coprimary measures, both in brief pain inventory average pain score and the patient's global impressions of improvement.

    The researchers enrolled 520 patients and randomised them into 4 different subgroups: 79 patients received duloxetine 20 mg daily, 150 patients received duloxetine 60 mg daily, 147 patients received 120 mg daily, and 144 patients received placebo. At least 80% of the patients in each arm of the study were Caucasian and at least 90% of each arm were women.

    At 3 months, patients treated with duloxetine 120 mg daily showed greater improvement in change from baseline in the Brief Pain Inventory Average Pain Score (APS; -2.31 vs -1.38, P < .001) and at endpoint in the Patients Global Impressions of Improvement score (PGII; 2.89 vs 3.39, P = .004) versus placebo-treated patients.

    At 6 months, the duloxetine 120-mg-daily group still exhibited greater improvement in APS change (-2.25 vs -1.42, P = .003) and PGII (2.93 vs 3.37, P = .012).

Source: American Academy of Pain Medicine – 24th Annual Meeting