Are Antihistamines Really Effective For Fibromyalgia Itching?

fibromyalgia itching

Itchiness is just one of the symptoms that come with fibromyalgia. And if you’re one of those who suffer from this, you know that it’s both stressful and irritating. It disturbs your sleep and hinders you from doing things you would normally would. Some claimed that antihistamines may be the solution to fibromyalgia itching. But is it really effective? Read on to find out.

Possible Causes of Fibromyalgia Itching

No one really knows the exact reason behind itchiness in fibromyalgia. However, there are some theories that could explain it:

  • Some people believe that the itchiness has something to do with the accumulation of heavy metals through diet. According to them, this has also contributed to some other fibromyalgia symptoms. One of these is itching.
  • Others however argue that itching has to do with formication. This is a disorder wherein your brain will imagine things that are not really there. In this case, it will imagine a feeling of itchiness, even if there is no itching present.
  • Experts in the field of chronic itching believe that hypersensitive nerve fibers sending wrong signals to the brain is the reason behind fibromyalgia itch

What Do Antihistamines Do?

Antihistamine is a type of drug designed to block the body’s natural response to allergy. When your body is exposed to allergens, it will start to release histamine. This is a type of chemical that will encourage the body to release fluid from cells. This will also trigger stuffy nose and cell inflammation. All these can lead to a feeling of itch, which is usually due to irritated skin cells.

Your body’s immune system helps to keep you protected against dangerous substances. The histamine released from your body clog your nose and respiratory system. However, often times, your body ends up releasing histamine because it mistakes harmless substance as dangerous. Antihistamines block the body’s release of histamines to allow you to breathe comfortably and prevent itch.

However, as fibromyalgia itching is not likely caused by histamines, antihistamines may not always work for relieving fibromyalgia itch.

Are Antihistamines Really Effective for Fibromyalgia Itching?

There is not a lot of good review regarding the use of antihistamines on fibromyalgia itch. Thus, it is difficult to confirm whether antihistamines are an effective cure or not.

However, anecdotal information provided by fibromyalgia patients states it can be effective but in limited ways. The information also suggests that not all antihistamines are equally effective. Over-the-counter antihistamines like Benadryl can provide some relief for fibromyalgia itching. However, it is more effective in the night when the side effects of drowsiness allows patients to sleep better. On the other hand, most fibromyalgia patients found topical antihistamines to be less effective in providing relief for itch.

Experts believe that drugs that act on nerves like anticonvulsants would provide better relief on fibromyalgia itch as compared to antihistamines. Other self-care methods that are effective for managing fibromyalgia itch include:

  • like keeping skin moisturize
  • healthy and
  • avoiding drugs that can cause side effects of itch e.g. aspirin


  • I use topical and oral antihistamines, ie, Benadryl. It has provided a lot of comfort from the fibro-itch. So I say Yes!

  • I take four to six piriton a day, due to asthma and other allergies and I don’t see any relief from fibromyalgia itching at all. Unfortunately I haven’t found anything else that works for me yet.

  • My itching happens when I lay down at night. Bendryl will help and Zyrtec during the day. Totally staying away from gluten and sugar and dairy mostly gluten absolutely helps.

  • I use strong cortisone cream, but that doesn’t always help, so I have found that Benadryl really helps, but it does make me drowsy. I would rather sleep than itch! I have also taken extra Neurontin that usually helps after awhile. Maybe I’ll try a less strong antihistamine during the day. I’ve always felt it’s our hyper sensitive nerve endings that cause the itching, just like they cause so many other things. Maybe they will find the answer soon.

  • No relief from Antihistamines. Feel like I have spiders crawling under my skin . I would scratch to the point of testing my skin. I now take Ketamine 2mls when it happens and it stops the itch within 2 minutes. I find it keeps it under control and I don’t have to take the Ketamine everyday.

  • When I increased the dose of duloxetine (cymbalta) for the pain part of fibro, the itching subsided partially, too. Not perfect, but better than losing my mind over either pain or itching.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *