Fibromyalgia Pain Reduced With Vitamin D

Fibromyalgia helped with Vitamin D

Researchers are saying that taking supplements of vitamin D can reduce pain and offer a cost-effective compliment to other traditional medical treatments for fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). Patients with FMS often experience very widespread chronic pain and fatigue and those studied with low levels of vitamin D have found some pain relief in taking the vitamin supplements.

Vitamin D Supplements help Fibromyalgia pain.Fibromyalgia sufferers may also experience occasional anxiety or depression, poor concentration, morning stiffness and sleep disorders. All the horrible symptoms of FMS can often reduce a patient’s quality of life. Often the symptoms can lead to a withdrawal from any social life to loss of employment or careers. A patient with FMS will often need ongoing physical therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy and multimodal therapies. Some will also go through temporary drug therapy and take meds such as: pregabaline, amitriptyline, and duloxetine. For those suffering with FMS, there is no cure known.

Study researcher and orthapaedist at Vienna’s Orthopaedic Hospital Speising, Dr. Florian Wepner, said that this study shows that Vitamin D supplements are an economical and safe treatment for FMS sufferers.

“Vitamin D supplementation may be regarded as a relatively safe and economical treatment for people with fibromyalgia.” – Dr. Florian Wepner

Dr. Wepner and other researchers discovered that patients often had low levels of calcifediol. Calcifediol is also known as 25-hydroxyvitamin D, 25-hydroxycholecalciferal, or calcidiol, and is produced in the liver by the enzyme cholecalciferal, or vitamin D3. The vitamin D3 is then converted by the liver to calcitriol which is an active form of vitamin D. Levels of calcifediol in a patient’s blood will offer the best indicator of the current level of vitamin D found in the patient. When the researchers found common low levels of calcifediol in patients with more severe pain and symptoms of fibromyalgia, they began to hypothesize that a vitamin D supplement might be of benefit by reducing the chronic pain that so many experienced.

“Low blood levels of calcifediol are especially common in patients with severe pain and fibromyalgia. But although the role of calcifediol in the perception of chronic pain is a widely discussed subject, we lack clear evidence of the role of vitamin D supplementation in fibromyalgia patients.” – Dr. Florian Wepner

Dr. Wepner then said that the researchers began a quest to determine whether raising the patient’s calcifediol levels would actually alleviate chronic pain and possibly cause an overall improvement in the patient’s condition.

Natural Vitamin DThe study was a randomized and controlled trial of 30 women with FMS that had low serum calcifediol levels of below 32ng/ml. The group’s levels were monitored at five weeks, 13 weeks, and 25 weeks into the study, while the FMS group took vitamin D supplements for 20 weeks. The monitoring allowed the researchers to adjust the oral dosage in the group to help maintain levels of calcifediol between 32 and 48ng/ml. The patients would also be monitored for an additional 24 weeks after stopping the supplements.

After 24 weeks of finishing the supplements, patients reported a marked reduction in their chronic pain levels. The patients all showed a significant improvement in chronic pain reduction during the first part of the study when the patients began taking the supplements, while the pain levels in the study’s placebo group remained unchanged.

Overall the group taking the vitamin D supplements scored better on a fibromyalgia impact questionnaire with symptoms like chronic morning fatigue. However, there were not any significant improvements with the group’s anxiety or depression.

Dr. Wepner believes the data they presented looks very promising for vitamin D helping to reduce the chronic pain suffered by patients with more severe cases of fibromyalgia syndrome. Dr. Wepner advises FMS patients to have their calcifediol monitored regularly by their doctors especially in the winter season when the hours of sunshine are reduced.

By Brent Matsalla

Sources:
Live Science
WebMD
Science Daily

5 Responses to "Fibromyalgia Pain Reduced With Vitamin D"

  1. Abbi   June 25, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    Oh don’t be fooled Betty … those topical pain gel do still go though the blood …

    Reply
  2. kristin   January 22, 2014 at 3:26 pm

    To people asking about dosage. I take 50,000 units once weekly. You could probably take a few of the standard 1000 unit pills from over the counter and be ok. It was just hard for me to take 50 of those a week haha. My levels were very low on blood work.

    Reply
  3. Mary   January 22, 2014 at 5:21 am

    I have been taking 4 vitamin D supplements daily for a few months and believe my fibromyalgia pain and severe discomfort from a shoulder replacement is much less. I think it is worth trying!

    Reply
  4. karenjewel   January 21, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    The issue with topical pain relief is that it is limited in application. For example, there are days when I have pain over very nearly every inch of my body. It would be, at the very least, impractical to apply. I do have pain gel, for the pain I get in my wrists and it does help. But, it is very tacky and takes a bit of time to dry. I can’t imagine getting it everywhere I have pain, and then waiting for it to dry on top of that!

    One thing I wondered about that the article did not appear to address is dosage. I did just skim the article. But, I didn’t see any suggestions of how much would be a bottom number. I take vitamin D but, I still have quite a bit of pain. I could increase. But, in theory, the sky is the limit on how much I could conceivably take.

    Reply
  5. Betty   January 20, 2014 at 8:54 am

    This is an interesting article, but I’m curious; has anyone here looked into topical pain relief to fight fibro pain? It provides prescription strength pain relief without any pills or side effects. A family member of mine gets topical pain gels through a pharmacy in the midwest, A&R Pharmacy in Liberty, MO, and all he does is apply the gel whenever he’s in pain. He has had significant results since going this route and I highly recommend it for anyone struggling with pain and/or pills. I hope this helps!

    Reply

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