Fibromyalgia and chronic pain: not enough painkiller palmitoylethanolamide in muscles

Swedisch university researchers published results end of May 2013 on what might be a major  cause of chronic pain in fibromyalgia and chronic muscle pain patients.  Muscles of patients suffering from chronic pain and fibromyalgia do not produce enough of the endogenous painkiller and inflammation-inhibitor palmitoylethanolamide (PEA). PEA is a molecule produced in our body with an important analgesic and anti-inflammatory function. This mechanism of action has been discovered in 1993 by the Nobel prize laureate professor Levi-Montalcini. PEA has been tested since 1972 in more than 6000 patients in over 40 clinical trials. In a new experiment the Swedisch scientists studied the levels and the production of PEA in muscles of patients suffering from chronic muscle pain. During a number of mild exercices, the level of PEA in muscles increases, to enable excercise without pain. But after the exercise, PEA levels in the muscles decrease much more in the patients compared to PEA levels in the muscles of healthy volunteers. The less PEA, the more pain. This is also the experience of fibromyalgia patients; after exercise they feel exhausted and suffer often from much more pain. This is one of the reasons why rehabilitation of fibromyalgia patients is difficult. Now, with the availability of pure PEA in the supplement PeaPure, fibromyalgia patients can supply their muscles with more PEA. PEA has no known troublesome side effects in contrast to other regular painkillers.

The authors:

The observation of the present study that chronic widespread pain does not trigger synthesis of the NAE’s (endogenous painkillers such as PEA) raises the possibility that chronic widespread pain patients could be helped by administration of exogenous PEA, which has been shown to have a good safety profile.

Dose recommendations for palmitoylethanolamide in fibromyalgia and chronic widespread pain syndrome

Start 400 mg capsules PeaPure three times daily. After 1 month, if pain reduction is insufficient double the dose. If after 2 months pain reduction is not clinical relevant, stop treating. If pain reduction is acceptable, reduce dose after 2 month to 3 times 1 capsule of PeaPure. During pain exacerbations, double dose.

Ghafouri N, Ghafouri B, Larsson B, Stensson N, Fowler CJ, Gerdle B. Palmitoylethanolamide and stearoylethanolamide levels in the interstitium of the trapezius muscle of women with chronic widespread pain and chronic neck-shoulder pain correlate with pain intensity and sensitivity.
Pain. 2013 May 14. doi:pii: S0304-3959(13)00225-X. 10.1016/j.pain.2013.05.002. [Epub ahead of print]

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