Consumer Reports Recommends Generics over FDA Approved Drugs for Fibromyalgia 2016-07-07

CR suggests Fibromyalgia Patients Try Generic Drugs First

  1. Cort
    The FDA approved drugs for Fibromyalgia underwent extensive testing, and most doctors probably reach for them first, but Consumer Reports does not recommend their use in FM.

    Instead based on cost and effectiveness criteria Consumer Reports asserted in 2014 that three generic drugs are probably the best choice for FM patients going the drug route.

    In order to make the list of recommended drugs, a drug had to
    • Be as effective as or more effective than other medicines used to treat fibromyalgia.
    • Have a safety record equal to or better than other medicines used to treat fibromyalgia.
    • Have an average price for a 30-day supply that was substantially lower than the most costly
    With regard to the FDA approved drugs, CR states that "studies show that the benefits of these medications are generally small. There is no clear evidence that one drug is better than another, and all of them probably lose their benefit over time."

    They can also be quite expensive. While generics can cost as little as $6/month Lyrica typically costs about $250/month and other drugs can cost as much as $500/month. CR provides a table showing costs for the drugs typically used in FM.

    CR believes these three drugs are the best bet for FM patients who wish to try drugs.
    • Generic amitriptyline
    • Generic gabapentin
    • Generic paroxetine-IR (immediate release)
    Older vs Newer Medications

    Are new medications necessarily better? Not necessarily....
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    Meanwhile the only treatment option given a strong recommendation by a pan-European group called EULAR was exercise.