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Monday 01 December 2003

Efficacy and tolerability of intravenous tropisetron in the treatment of fibromyalgia.

By: Spath M, Stratz T, Neeck G, Kotter I, Hammel B, Amberger CC, Haus U, Farber L, Pongratz D, Muller W.

Scand J Rheumatol 2004;33(4):267-70

OBJECTIVE: To determine the efficacy of a serotonin receptor (5-HT(3)) antagonist in the treatment of fibromyalgia (FM) in a prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, multicentre trial. METHODS: Twenty-one female patients (age 21-63 years) with FM according to the American College of Rheumatology classification criteria for FM were assigned randomly to either a placebo group or to receive a daily intravenous bolus injection of 5 mg tropisetron for 5 days. RESULTS: In patients receiving tropisetron, the visual analogue scale (VAS) score for pain decreased by 28.9 compared with a decrease of 6.8 in the placebo group [probability (p)=0.063; effect size: 0.794]. Similar results were obtained using a body diagram pain score as a secondary efficacy parameter: mean pain reduction was 27.2 in the tropisetron group, versus 2.8 in the placebo group (p=0.038; effect size: 0.902). CONCLUSION: 5-HT(3) receptor antagonists provide significant pain relief for a group of FM patients.

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