Intravenous Vitamins Might Be Effective Therapy for Fibromyalgia

Article excerpt

Byline: Patrick B. Massey, M.D.

Fibromyalgia is a medical condition, primarily in women, that is characterized by severe musculoskeletal pain, general fatigue and significant sleep disturbances.

It affects about 10 million people in the U.S. alone. Although there is no cure, there are a number of medications and nontraditional therapies that can help with the pain, fatigue, sleep trouble and mental confusion, called "fibro-fog."

Early clinical research indicates that intravenous vitamins might also be added to the list of effective therapies.

Although the exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, the current theory suggests that there might be a "sensitization" of the central nervous system to the perception of pain. This sensitization process is activated or made worse by chronic stress, illness and other chronic pain conditions.

Some early research suggested there might be a genetic shortcoming in some important vitamin B1-dependent enzymes in fibromyalgia patients. These enzymes are necessary for energy production and might malfunction even with normal levels of vitamin B1. Once the energy stores are depleted, then the fatigue, muscle pain and "fibro-fog" associated with the disease are revealed.

Intravenous vitamins have been used for a variety of medical conditions, including fibromyalgia. The theory behind intravenous vitamins is simple. Vitamins given through the veins reach higher blood and tissue levels than can be achieved by mouth. Higher vitamin levels might increase energy production through enhanced enzyme activity and metabolism.

The vitamins that are most commonly used are the B vitamins and vitamin C. These vitamins are water-soluble and are not stored in any great quantity by the body.

The earliest medical publication on intravenous vitamins and fibromyalgia was by Alan Gaby, M. …