Commonly Asked Questions About Sodium Oxybate As A Treatment For Fibromyalgia

Commonly Asked Questions About Sodium Oxybate As A Treatment For Fibromyalgia

In 2009, a study was published that had been carried out in the United States which reported that many patients with fibromyalgia who had taken sodium oxybate, had experienced a reduction in their pain levels. 46% of patients who had been given a relatively low dosage of the medication felt that their pain was reduced and 39% who had been given a higher dose said that they had less pain as well.

This received significant levels of media attention in the UK and many people are keen to try out this new treatment as a means of coping with their condition, but there are some questions that are commonly asked about this treatment simply because it is so new.

What Is Sodium Oxybate?

Sodium oxybate is a very powerful depressant that works on the central nervous system by slowing it down, so that people can get a good nights sleep. Since people with fibromyalgia are often unable to get restful sleep because they wake up when they fall into this stage of sleep, sodium oxybate can help.

Is Sodium Oxybate Safe?

Sodium oxybate is a licensed medication, but it is a powerful depressant and for that reason it may not be suitable for everyone. For example, pregnant women should not take sodium oxybate, nor should women who are breast feeding. Other people who cannot be prescribed this medication are people who have liver or kidney disease, people who have heart failure or very high blood pressure.

Because it is such a powerful drug, it can produce some side effects. People are usually quite drowsy for several hours after taking the drug. Some people may develop an upset stomach, feeling quite sick and perhaps having diarrhoea. Occasionally some patients reported feeling more anxious than usual and some experienced giddiness. Rarely some patients do experience side effects such as bed wetting or sleep walking, which are the most serious side effects, but it is important to read all the information provided with this medication, so that you can be aware of all possible side effects.

Will It Cure My Fibromyalgia?

Sodium oxybate can only help to alleviate the symptoms of fibromyalgia, it cannot cure this condition, because as yet, there is no single cure for it. All that it could do is to reduce the pain and help patients to sleep better, which can be a huge improvement in terms of quality of life, for people with fibromyalgia.

Will Sodium Oxybate Work For Me?

There is no way of knowing who will find that sodium oxybate works for them. The only way to be sure is to start taking sodium oxybate and then monitor progress, to ascertain its success and efficacy as a treatment. It will work for some people, but not for everyone, so it is important to bear that in mind.

If you have any other questions about the use of sodium oxybate for treating fibromyalgia, then it is important to talk these through with your pain consultant, who will be able to answer any specific queries that you may have.