Does trazodone help fibromyalgia?(+3 preventions)

In this article, we will discuss whether trazodone can help treat fibromyalgia or not. We will look at the approved research regarding the use of trazodone for treating fibromyalgia pain. We will also look at the risks and benefits associated with trazodone to treat fibromyalgia pain. 

Does trazodone help fibromyalgia?

Yes, trazodone helps in treating fibromyalgia pain. However, it is not an FDA-approved medication for the treatment of fibromyalgia but it is sometimes prescribed off-label for treating fibromyalgia. 

Trazodone belongs to the serotonin antagonists and reuptake inhibitors class of medications. It is an FDA-approved medication for major depressive disorder. The off-label uses of trazodone include anxiety, Alzheimer’s, substance abuse, bulimia, and fibromyalgia (1). 

Fibromyalgia is a chronic musculoskeletal pain that is characterized by fatigue, cognitive, and psychiatric disturbances. It is considered a neurosensory pain because the patient cannot process pain in the brain (2,3). 

Consult your doctor for the symptoms associated with pain and get yourself assessed for fibromyalgia. If your doctor recommends then, start taking trazodone at the prescribed dosage and frequency under your doctor’s supervision. 

What does research suggest?

A research study was conducted on 66 fibromyalgia patients for 12 weeks. These patients were given trazodone doses at a flexible range between 50-300mg/day (4). 

According to this study, it was observed that these patients showed remarkable improvement in sleep quality, duration, and efficiency. Since disturbed sleep is a prominent feature of fibromyalgia, trazodone showed quite impressive results in improving sleep-related disturbances associated with fibromyalgia (4). 

Some prominent symptoms of fibromyalgia such as depression and anxiety were treated with trazodone due to its properties as an antidepressant and a hypnotic (4).

The results of this study after week 12 showed that trazodone did not markedly improve pain intensity associated with fibromyalgia, but rather affected pain interference with regular daily activities (4).

Among the patients who participated in this study, 18.6% of patients displayed satisfying results, 46.5% of patients showed slight improvement, 18.6% showed no results whereas, 16.3% of patients reported worsening conditions (4). 

How long does trazodone take to start working for fibromyalgia? 

Just like other psychotropic medications, trazodone might also take about 2-4 weeks to start showing its efficacy for treating fibromyalgia pain. However, the appropriate time for trazodone to show its efficacy varies from patient to patient depending on the condition they are taking trazodone for. 

It is essential to continue taking trazodone for as long as your doctor has prescribed even if the symptoms start to fade away. Do not abruptly stop the medication, as it may cause withdrawal symptoms. 

Always consult your doctor before starting or stopping the dosage of trazodone to avoid potential adverse effects. If the side effects are severe, consult your doctor for a drug switch to a safer drug for treating fibromyalgia pain. 

What precautions will improve fibromyalgia with trazodone?

Along with taking trazodone, you might also need to take some extra precautions to improve fibromyalgia. Some precautions required may include: 

  • Lifestyle adjustments- You must put in extra effort to improve your lifestyle such as taking a healthy diet and stress management which is crucial for fibromyalgia. 


  • Sleep management- Ensure to have an improved and consistent sleep schedule. Fibromyalgia tends to disturb sleep quality and you need to practice good sleep hygiene habits along with taking trazodone to improve fibromyalgia. 


  • Physical activities- You must inculcate regular physical exercises and activities in your life which can be beneficial for fibromyalgia pain.  

You may discuss other precautionary measures with your healthcare provider. Pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatment along with precautionary measures help in improving fibromyalgia pain and related symptoms in a shorter span of time. 

What to do if trazodone does not help in fibromyalgia?

Trazodone is not an approved medication for fibromyalgia, so if trazodone is not relieving fibromyalgia pain, you can contact your doctor to switch to an appropriate medication with better therapeutic outcomes for fibromyalgia pain. 

Your doctor may suggest FDA-approved medications for treating fibromyalgia which include (5):

Your doctor may also suggest you explore non-pharmacological approaches for fibromyalgia such as physical therapy, cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT), acupuncture, or mindfulness-based approaches. 

However, in my opinion, you should maintain a healthy and transparent relationship with your practitioner so that they can provide you with appropriate treatment regarding fibromyalgia.

Through honest communication, they may help in relieving your symptoms with pharmacological or non-pharmacological approaches in the shortest possible time. 

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Shin JJ, Saadabadi A. Trazodone. [Updated 2022 Jul 10]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from:


Bhargava J, Hurley JA. Fibromyalgia. 2023 Jun 11. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan–. PMID: 31082018.


Siracusa R, Paola RD, Cuzzocrea S, Impellizzeri D. Fibromyalgia: Pathogenesis, Mechanisms, Diagnosis and Treatment Options Update. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Apr 9;22(8):3891. doi: 10.3390/ijms22083891. PMID: 33918736; PMCID: PMC8068842.


Morillas-Arques, P., Rodriguez-Lopez, C. M., Molina-Barea, R., Rico-Villademoros, F., & Calandre, E. P. (2010). Trazodone for the treatment of fibromyalgia: An open-label, 12-week study. BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, 11, 204.

5.- [Internet]. Cologne, Germany: Institute for Quality and Efficiency in Health Care (IQWiG); 2006-. Medication for the treatment of fibromyalgia. 2018 Mar 8. Available from:

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