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Pain Management Community
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1298907 tn?1272890088

Cymbalta vs Neurontin for nerve pain?

Hello all, I hope everyone is doing well today. It seems as if spring has finally come to Idaho! The sun is out & I'm excited to get out & try & work in my garden now that I'm feeling better this year! Yaaay! Can anyone tell I'm a stay at home mom who likes to talk? My 2 year old keeps me company all day & Lord knows I love him with all my heart but sometimes we all just need a little bit of adult conversation! I'm so grateful to have found all of you here on this forum; it's such a relief not to feel so alone anymore.
Is there anyone here who can give me some feedback on Cymbalta? Whether it was prescribed for depression/anxiety issues or for nerve pain I'm really interested in knowing how well people are experiencing actual results from it as far as pain relief is concerned & also how well it works for depression as compared to some of the other common anti-depressants such as zoloft, prozac, lexapro. I've tried all 3 of these, liked Lexapro the best.
At my last appt I had discussed with my PMP some concerns about my neurontin possibly not being a strong enough dose. He had originally instructed me to take 1 tablet 3 times daily. Although they're what I believe to be the lowest possible dose (100mg) they make me feel a bit loopy & I end up feeling very sluggish & wanting to take a nap. This is not an option for me due to a 'little' reason I mentioned at the start of this post. We've worked with my meds (Norco, Neurontin, Valium & Lodine) to get them at a dosage & schedule so as to keep me as alert & in as minimal amount of pain as possible so that I can competently care for my son during the day. So he instead had me take my Norco & Lodine as originally he had prescribed (1-2 norco 4 times daily as needed for pain & 1 Lodine daily for inflammation) & 1 neurontin at dinnertime (once my husband was home) & then 1 -2 valium at bedtime as needed for spasms; not neccesarily on a daily basis but whenever I have a bad flareup. This had been working pretty well but after my last SI pain injection I have been experiencing a significant increase in the nerve pain that I have that starts deep in my hip & shoots all the way down my leg. I'm not sure if this could be from the injection (though I didn't have this problem with the injection prior to this last one) or if I may be just putting more strain on my hip. Both are a good possibility.
Anyhow I had asked him if he thought it'd be ok if I were to take 2 of the neurontin in the evening, maybe one at dinner & another a few hours later at bedtime. He said that there wouldn't be any harm in doing that but that he wanted to give me a script for Cymbalta & see if I get better results from it. Of course I was pretty confused about this as I thought that this medication was an anti-depressant only. I had no idea that it was used to treat this type of pain. He said that he wanted to try it because he had discussed getting me back on an AD anyway (with me having been under a lot of stress & struggling with the 'stay at home Mommy blues' in case anyone was wondering about my situation/history see my 1st posting concerning my '1st urine screening w/ PMC') & this way we wouldn't have to add another med when the Cymbalta could do the job of both.
So I'm just very curious as to how well people have liked it, has it worked for them & any negative side effects it may have. The last AD I was on was zoloft & although it seemed to do very well as far as keeping the severe depression under control I eventually chose to wean myself off of it because I just got to the point where I felt completely 'numb' to everything. At first it really helped me & it was a relief not to feel as if the entire world was against me & to be able to actually carry on a conversation with my husband w/out breaking down in tears every other word. The bad side of it was that I felt no joy either. I began to notice that little things my son would do that would normally make me laugh & smile I just didn't really seem to care about either way. No sadness but no happiness either. I just figured there had to be a better way. So in short that would be my main concern with this new medication.
I'm now into my 4th day of taking it & haven't had any negative side effects so far, though I know it'll take a few weeks for me to really see any results if it's actually going to work for me.
I'd so greatly appreciate any advice anyone could give me!
    Thank you all so very much for your friendship & support! I could not ever begin to thank you all enough for your compassion for those of us that struggle to get through each day. It is such a blessing for me to have found you all; I feel as though I have a little 'online family' of sorts that I can always turn to & know that I'll be understood.           Take care & God bless,
                               KM
    
2 Responses
547368 tn?1440545385
Hello KM,

As I have said in earlier posts I do not tolerate any medications very well. However after I was forced to leave my beloved career due to increased unmanageable chronic pain I quickly found myself feeling "worthless."

My PCP was very concerned about not only my pain but my emotional status. She gave e several options for more potent pain relievers but also prescribed Cymbalta, which she said was not an option. Some years ago I had tried numerous tricyclic antidepressants for pain with troublesome and no-tolerable side effects. But I was desperate.

It took about six days before the Cymbalta "kicked in." I no longer felt worthless, in fact I no longer felt any thing. We had a house full of company that were all laughing and talking and I sat wordless. If you knew me "wordless" has never been a term one would use to describe me. It suddenly occurred to me that I had nothing to say. I didn't care what they were talking about. I sat almost motionless. I took the Cymbalta a few more days and had the same effect. Well I didn't want to feel worthless but I certainly wanted to feel something.

I noticed no decrease in pain but I didn't complain about it. I didn't complain about anything because I had nothing to say. It didn't take long for my PCP to discontinue the Cymbalta. It did not cause vertigo, headache or any of the usual side effects I get from most meds. The feelings never returned to even close to the severe degree that they were at when the Cymbalta was prescribed. So in that respect it must have helped. I can't say that I will never take it again....but I would have to be desperate.

So that was my experience...but remember I do not tolerate most drugs. Please let us know how effective it is for you.

Following my last SIJ injection I also had a new and more specific sharp pain but it did gradually subside. I hope yours does also.

Best of luck,
~Tuck  
1301089 tn?1290670171
I've been using Cymbalta with good results for a couple of years now.  Originally I was on Cymbalta and Paxil.   My PMP moved me off the Paxil and increased the Cymbalta dosage.  The Cymbalta does a good job on my mood, fibro pain and abdominal pain.  All nerve issues.  But it does make my nauseated.  Not a big deal because of my abdominal adhesions, nausea is pretty much a constant in my life anyway.  I keep a Rx of phenergan and use them daily.

I tried neurontin.  That was a horrible experience.  It made me violently ill (nausea and vomiting) and kept my mind in a cloud.  I'll never try that one again.

As others have said, we all react to medications differently.  This is just my experience with them.  Hopefully your experience will be a good one.
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