5-Hydroxytryptophan debated as fibromyalgia treatment

Lana Bandoim's picture

Fibromyalgia patients often turn to supplements and herbs to help them fight the chronic pain and fatigue associated with the disease. 5-Hydroxytryptophan or 5-HTP remains a controversial treatment option, but some patients claim it has helped them. The supplement continues to be studied and debated among researchers.


5-Hydroxytryptophan appears as a step between the conversion of tryptophan to serotonin. Most people think of turkey once they hear the term tryptophan, but this essential amino acid is available in other foods. It is part of an important process to create the neurotransmitter serotonin which appears to play a role in mood regulation and depression. The 5-Hydroxytryptophan supplement has been linked to less anxiety and less pain in patients with fibromyalgia.


5-HTP tends to be associated with an improvement in sleep patterns and the reduction of pain levels. The supplements are made from plant seeds, but they remain controversial. The University of Maryland Medical Center points out that some 5-Hydroxytryptophan supplements have been contaminated with Peak X, and there are reports of patients suffering from eosinophilia-myalgia syndrome after taking it. Eosinophilia- myalgia syndrome is characterized by acute pain, fever, rashes, fatigue, headaches and other symptoms. It has also been linked to memory problems, chronic pain, liver disease, high blood pressure and other issues.

There is still no cure for fibromyalgia, but some patients claim to have found relief through a variety of supplements, herbs and drugs. Before you begin a new medication, you should consult a doctor. It is important to consider your current health status and potential side effects. It is also crucial to consider drug interactions, and 5-HTP is not recommended for people who take antidepressants, tramadol, triptans, carbidopa and demerol. In addition, it is recommended that people avoid taking 5-HTP at the same time as cough syrups because they contain dextromethorphan.

Read more about fibromyalgia:
Memantine drug shows promise for fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia study focuses on brain stimulation to fight pain



The contamination was in the late 80s, wasn't it - are there more contamination cases NOW??