Naltrexone is a prescription medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating opiate and alcohol addiction. At a significantly lower dose, Naltrexone has also been prescribed to improve pain caused by fibromyalgia and other chronic pain syndromes, although this usage is somewhat controversial among doctors. Since the FDA has not specifically approved Naltrexone to treat pain, it is considered an off-label use of the drug.
Naltrexone is an opioid receptor antagonist. In people with fibromyalgia and other types of chronic pain, it is theorized that Naltrexone may bind with the opioid receptors on immune cells, possibly changing the way the cells function. It may also increase the body’s production of endorphins and other natural chemicals associated with a feeling of well-being.
How do I take it?
During clinical trials for fibromyalgia, Naltrexone has been administered orally once a day.
The FDA-approved label for Naltrexone, which assumes a higher dose, lists common side effects including headache, drowsiness, dizziness, fatigue, changes in energy levels, nervousness, insomnia, loss of appetite, irritability, nausea, vomiting, constipation, abdominal pain, and muscle or joint pain.
Rare but serious side effects listed for full-dose Naltrexone include confusion, hallucinations, vision changes, and severe vomiting or diarrhea.
For more details about this treatment, visit:
Naltrexone – MedlinePlus
The use of low-dose naltrexone (LDN) as a novel anti-inflammatory treatment for chronic pain – Clinical Rheumatology