The Annals of Pharmacotherapy: Vol. 36, No. 4, pp. 707-712. DOI 10.1345/aph.1A184
© 2002 Harvey Whitney Books Company.

Research Articles

Serotonergic agents in the treatment of fibromyalgia syndrome

LJ Miller and KL Kubes

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate literature that discusses the treatment of fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) with agents that involve the neurotransmitter serotonin.

DATA SOURCES: Biomedical literature accessed through MEDLINE (1966-August 2001) and International Pharmaceutical


DATA SYNTHESIS: The cause and pathophysiology of FMS remain elusive, although abnormalities in the serotonin pathway have been implicated. Several serotonergic agents have been studied for use in FMS. Trials and case reports focusing on the use of newer agents: the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, venlafaxine and tramadol, were reviewed. CONCLUSIONS: Current research suggests that the serotonergic agents may reduce at least some of the symptoms of FMS. However, medications that act on multiple neurotransmitters may prove to be more effective in symptom management. Additional long-term studies are required in order to validate these results.