Sahar Swidan, Pharm.D.

Sahar Swidan, Pharm.D.

BCPS, ABAAHP, FAARFM, FACA

Cellular Energy Dysregulation in Fibromyalgia

“Fibromyalgia is related to dysregulation in mitochondrial function.  Acetyl-L-carnitine could help with mitochondrial energy support and help symptoms as shown in this study. Duloxetine has been shown in clinical trials to help with fibromyalgia symptoms.

A randomized controlled trial comparing duloxetine and acetyl L-carnitine in fibromyalgic patients: preliminary data. (Jan 2015)

Objective: To compare the efficacy of duloxetine and acetyl L-carnitine (ALC) in treating pain, depression, anxiety, and well-being in fibromyalgia patients.

Design: This randomized trial included 65 women with fibromyalgia and assigned them to receive duloxetine or ALC for 12 weeks. Pain, depression, and anxiety symptoms were measured at baseline, 4, and 12 weeks using a variety of verified assessment tools.

Treatment: Patients assigned to duloxetine received 30 to 60 mg/day, and patients assigned to ALC received 500 mg three times daily.

Results: Both treatments improved depression and pain symptoms, but neither improved anxiety symptoms. Pain was reduced to a greater extent in the duloxetine group.

Conclusion: This study confirms the efficacy of duloxetine and suggests that acetyl L-carnitine is also efficacious for improving pain, depression, and quality of life in fibromyalgia with fewer side effects.

Study: A randomised controlled trial comparing duloxetine and acetyl L-carnitine in fibromyalgic patients: preliminary data. (Jan 2015)

Adding ALC to the regimen may help.  Before staring any new supplements, always check with your health care provider to make sure it is safe to use with your current regimen.