Good News For Fibromyalgia Sufferers

Hat tip to Kevin, MD for the link, which reports the FDA approval of Lyrica as the first drug officially approved for treating fibromyalgia symptoms. Sadly, it only works in 30-60 percent of sufferers. Lyrica has previously been approved for treating partial seizures and pain from shingles outbreaks and diabetic neuropathy. From the article:

The FDA estimated that three to six million Americans — most of them middle-aged women — have fibromyalgia.

There is, however, no clinical test to confirm a diagnosis. An exclusionary diagnosis is made after physical examination and symptom evaluation.

A more cynical person than I might suggest that, of the 40-70 percent of sufferers who don’t respond to Lyrica, a significant number are those poor misdiagnosed COWMAS sufferers that show up in the ER three times a week seeking narcotics…

Edit: 6-26-07 Lots of good comments from fibro sufferers in the comments, including a few experiences with Lyrica. Note how PT, exercise and NSAIDs helped most of them. These are the people dealing with their illness and not using it as a crutch or an excuse for narcotics. My hat’s off to them. I’d encourage other fibro sufferers (yeah, even those of y’all that hate my guts) to also check on this online community: Flying With Fibro.