Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Fibromyalgia Health Center

Font Size

Sleep Drug May Treat Fibromyalgia Pain

Study Shows Xyrem May Help Fight Pain and Fatigue in Fibromyalgia Patients

Reducing Fatigue in Fibromyalgia Patients continued...

The most common side effects among people taking Xyrem were headache (15% and 23% of patients in the low- and high-dose groups, respectively), nausea (14% and 21%), and dizziness (13% and 17%).

Xyrem is a central nervous system depressant also known as gamma hydroxybutyrate (GHB). GHB, sometimes referred to as the "date-rape drug," has a high potential for abuse.

"But we haven't seen much abuse when the drug is prescribed for narcolepsy," says Daniel J. Clauw, MD, a rheumatologist at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, who was not involved with the study.

"The systems in place to prevent [abuse] seem to be working," he says.

3 Drugs Approved for Fibromyalgia

There are three drugs approved in the U.S. for the treatment of fibromyalgia: Lyrica, Cymbalta, and Savella. None of them works in the same way as Xyrem.

By itself, each drug is effective in about 40% of patients, Clauw tells WebMD.

"So there is clearly room for other drugs with different mechanisms of action. Also, as with any chronic condition, you might get a better response by combining different drugs that work differently," he says. Clauw consults for the makers of all four drugs.

Kristine Thorson, a fibromyalgia patient from Tucson, Ariz., tells WebMD the drug worked when all others failed. "I was able to give up [narcotic painkillers]," she says.

At doses similar to those used in the treatment of narcolepsy, Xyrem can cost $500 a month.

Jazz Pharmaceuticals Inc., which makes the drug and funded the study, has applied for FDA approval for use of Xyrem in treating fibromyalgia.

1 | 2

Today on WebMD

instructor training woman with dumbbells
Can it help your fibromyalgia flare-ups?
woman painting
It’s hard, but we’ve got tips.
woman at desk rubbing shoulder
Tips to modify your workspace is one step.
Woman rubbing her upper back
Get treatment options and coping skills.
Fatigue or Something More
Woman with stressed, fatigue
woman in pain
woman eating apple
Sex Advice for Single Women
Your Symptoms
Uncomfortable mature woman