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What are the Natural Fibromyalgia Treatments available in the UK? 

Considering medical cannabis for fibromyalgia? Read our expert guide and connect to a private doctor for personalised care and effortless medical cannabis prescriptions via an easy to use app.

Medical Cannabis for Fibromyalgia: An Introduction

Medical Cannabis for Fibromyalgia: Your Journey With Script Assist

Connect with a private pain management doctor able to prescribe medical cannabis with Script Assist for a personalised care plan and a fully streamlined digital journey.

Complete our quick eligibility checker to understand whether you’re likely eligible for medical cannabis for fibromyalgia.

Find a private pain doctor who prescribes medical cannabis for fibromyalgia on our Find a Doctor page.

Provide some additional details and make an enquiry.

If you want to use your private medical insurance, make sure you check the insurance coverage of your chosen doctor.

After enquiry acceptance, simply pay and book your consultation directly in the App.

For private medical insurance, ensure you receive your authorisation code prior to paying for your booking.

If your doctor prescribes you medical cannabis for fibromyalgia then you can pay via the App, and then track it all the way to your door-step.

Pay before 3pm to guarantee next-day delivery by 1pm.

Easily request repeat medical cannabis prescriptions via the App with a single click.  

What are the symptoms of fibromyalgia?  

Fibromyalgia causes widespread pain and chronic fatigue, in addition to a variety of other symptoms that differs from patient to patient. This variability increases the complexity of symptom management and therefore the types of fibromyalgia treatments used.

Widespread Pain

All fibromyalgia patients suffer from widespread chronic pain that affects multiple parts of the body. Often described as a constant dull ache, for a patient to be diagnosed with fibromyalgia, the pain must occur on both sides of the body, above and below the waist.

Chronic Fatigue

Many patients suffering from fibromyalgia often experience an overwhelming and persistent sense of tiredness that no amount of sleep is able to relieve.


Although many patients often suffer from extreme fatigue, many also struggle to sleep due to pain, restless legs syndrome, or other sleep disorders such as sleep apnoea.

Cognitive Impairment

Many sufferers of fibromyalgia suffer from a symptom called “fibro fog” which makes it harder to focus, pay attention and concentrate on mental tasks.

Other Symptoms

Fibromyalgia can also manifest a wide range of other symptoms, including morning stiffness, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), sensitivity to stimuli including bright lights and noise, numbness or tingling and depression and anxiety.

What are the causes of fibromyalgia? 

At the heart of the suffering felt by fibromyalgia patients is the concept of abnormal pain processing, where the central nervous system processes pain abnormally, heightening the perception of pain across the body.

Research using functional MRI (fMRI) has clearly demonstrated that fibromyalgia patients experience pain from stimuli that would not typically cause discomfort in healthy individuals, for example Gracely et al.’s study “ Functional magnetic resonance imaging evidence of augmented pain processing in fibromyalgia” highlights this abnormal brain activity.

This phenomenon is akin to a faulty alarm system, misinterpreting and overreacting to pain signals, and begs an extremely important question – what leads to this abnormal pain processing, turning the body’s normal pain perception pathways into an amplifier of discomfort and distress?

Let’s delve into each of the potential causes of fibromyalgia, providing us with a basis of understanding for when further considering fibromyalgia treatments.

Genetic and Environmental Influences

A broad range of studies have demonstrated that individuals with a family history of fibromyalgia are at a higher risk of development the condition, for example Siracusa et al.’s 2021 research in the “International Journal of Molecular Sciences.” (Siracusa, 2021).

Physical and Emotional Trauma

An emerging body of research is now beginning to demonstrate that both physical and emotional trauma are closely linked to the onset of fibromyalgia. The stress response from such events may alter the body’s pain pathways. Jones et al.’s study in the “Journal of Pain Research” explores the connection between PTSD and fibromyalgia, suggesting that the stress response from such trauma may alter the body’s pain pathways.

Infections as Triggers

Some infections may also increase an individuals risk to developing fibromyalgia. The body’s inflammatory response to certain infections like influenza, hepatitis C, and Lyme disease as highlighted in Behm et al.’s paper “Unique immunologic patterns in fibromyalgia.”


Fibromyalgia is a condition with multifaceted origins, which results in the diverse and often debilitating symptoms experienced by those with the condition and leading some to seek natural fibromyalgia treatments.

Ready to Find a Pain Specialist Able to Prescribe THC and CBD Oil for Fibromyalgia Pain in the UK?

How prevalent is fibromyalgia in the UK? 

According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), chronic pain, fibromyalgia affects around 5.4% of the UK population. (NICE, Chronic Pain Prevalence). This estimation aligns with a systematic review named “Prevalence of chronic pain in the UK: a systematic review and meta-analysis of population studies,” which also estimates the population prevalence of fibromyalgia to be around 5%. (PubMed Central, 2016).

Fibromyalgia Action UK, suggests a slightly lower prevalence in the UK of around 2% of the population and affecting individuals of all ages, races, and economic levels (FMA UK, Fibromyalgia Facts).

Global Prevalence

Internationally, prevalence rates vary, with estimates generally ranging from 2% to 8% of the population in different countries.

A survey of five European countries reported an overall prevalence of fibromyalgia ranging from 2.9% to 4.7%, (FMA UK, European Prevalence).

Gender Disparity

Fibromyalgia is significantly more prevalent in women versus men. Multiple pieces of research demonstrate that women represented the majority of diagnosed cases.

This gender disparity is well evidenced by data indicating that in new cases of fibromyalgia between 85% to 89.2% are women (NCPHWR, Study on Gender Differences).

What are the different types of existing therapies and fibromyalgia treatments?

In the UK, fibromyalgia treatment strategies are largely guided by NHS recommendations and MHRA guidelines.

Pharmacological Fibromyalgia Treatments

Pharmacological fibromyalgia treatment usually involves a variety of medications aimed at managing pain, improving sleep, and helping to manage mood.

There are no medications specifically approved by the MHRA exclusively for fibromyalgia, but there are a number which are widely used based on existing clinical evidence and NHS guidance:

Antidepressants: Frequently prescribed to manage some of the symptoms of fibromyalgia including mood, sleep and pain. Some antidepressants often used include:

  • Amitriptyline
  • Duloxetine
  • Fluoxetine
  • Citalopram
  • Paroxetine
  • Sertraline

Whilst antidepressants can be effective to help improve sleep and mood, and some have been found to reduce pain, they may cause side effects such as nausea, weight gain, and drowsiness (NHS, Fibromyalgia Treatment).

Anticonvulsants: Pregabalin and gabapentin are often used to manage fibromyalgia pain, working by reducing nervous system overactivity. Again, while some patients find relief with these medications, side effects may include like dizziness and weight gain.

Non-Pharmacological Fibromyalgia Treatments

At the heart of most fibromyalgia treatment plans are a series of drug-free treatments:

  • Exercise: Regular exercise has been demonstrated to be one of the most effective fibromyalgia treatments in reducing pain, improving function, and boosting mood.
  • Talking Therapies: Cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) and acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) are both considered to be beneficial for managing the impact of fibromyalgia on mental health and help patients cope with pain, address sleep disturbances, and improve overall well-being.
  • Physical Therapies: Physiotherapy and occupational therapy can help improve mobility and function.

Limitations of Current Fibromyalgia Treatments

While these treatments can offer significant relief, they also come with limitations. The effectiveness of antidepressants and opioids vary widely by individual, and sometimes come alongside a challenging side effect profile.

This has led to some patients seeking alternative, natural fibromyalgia treatments. In the UK, with the legalisation of medical cannabis in 2018, patients are now able to be prescribed medical cannabis, including both THC and CBD oil for fibromyalgia.   

In the next section we will take a deep dive into the available evidence behind fibromyalgia and cannabis, including the data on THC and CBD for fibromyalgia.

What evidence exists for fibromyalgia and cannabis?

For patients seeking alternative treatments for fibromyalgia pain, a review of the existing data on cannabis and fibromyalgia may be of interest.  

In our comprehensive review of evidence below, including data on THC and CBD treatment for fibromyalgia, we highlight many of the most important papers published on the topic.

“Use of medical cannabis by patients with fibromyalgia in Canada after cannabis legalisation: a cross-sectional study”

The objective of this study was given that “medications have only small to moderate effects on symptoms in fibromyalgia (FM). Cannabinoids, including medical cannabis (MC) may have potential to fill this gap.”

The study found the following in a cohort of 1000 rheumatology attendees:

  • 23.9% of participants with fibromyalgia had ever used medical cannabis versus 11.1% of non-fibromyalgia patients.
  • Among those fibromyalgia patients that had ever used medical cannabis 61% continued use.
  • The benefits as to how much medical cannabis helped with symptoms were assessed as 7.0 (±2.3) on a 10-centimeter Visual Analog Scale (0: not at all; 10: very much).

“Safety and Efficacy of Medical Cannabis in Fibromyalgia”

This study looked to investigate the safety, and effectiveness of medical cannabis therapy for fibromyalgia.

The study found the following among the 367 fibromyalgia patients using medical cannabis:

  • Pain intensity (scale 0-10) reduced from a median of 9.0 at baseline to 5.0 (p < 0.001), and 194 patients (81.1%) achieved treatment response.
  • The most common adverse effects were mild and included dizziness (7.9%), dry mouth (6.7%), and gastrointestinal symptoms (5.4%).
  • 7.6% of patients stopped the treatment prior to the six months follow-up.

“Medical Cannabis for the Treatment of Fibromyalgia”

Data for this study was obtained from the registries of two hospitals in Israel for fibromyalgia patients treated with medical cannabis, with the purpose being to understand the effectiveness of this potential fibromyalgia treatment.

The study found the following from the 26 patients included in the study:

  • After commencing treatment, all the patients reported a significant improvement in every parameter on the questionnaire.
  • Thirteen patients (50%) stopped taking any other fibromyalgia treatments.
  • Eight patients (30%) experienced very mild adverse effects.

“Cannabis for the Treatment of Fibromyalgia: A Systematic Review”

This review aims to examine and discuss current clinical evidence regarding the use of cannabis for the treatment of fibromyalgia and is based on the result of four randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and five observational studies (a total of 564 patients) that investigated the effects of cannabis on fibromyalgia symptoms were included in this review.

  1. Skrabek et al. (2008):
    • Study Design: Randomised Controlled Trial (RCT). Patients were randomly assigned to receive either nabilone or a placebo.
    • Results: Those who took nabilone felt less pain (2.04 out of 10), had less trouble from fibromyalgia (FIQ score decreased by 12.07 points), and felt less anxious (anxiety score decreased by 1.67 points) compared to those who took the placebo.
  2. Ware et al. (2010):
    • Study Design: Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT). Patients tried either nabilone or amitriptyline, then switched.
    • Results: Nabilone helped people sleep better compared to amitriptyline (Insomnia Severity Index difference: 3.2; Leeds Sleep Evaluation Questionnaire difference: 0.5). However, it didn’t help much with pain, mood, or quality of life.
  3. Fiz et al. (2011):
    • Study Design: Observational Study (OBS). Researchers asked people with fibromyalgia about their symptoms and if they used cannabis.
    • Results: People who used cannabis reported feeling less pain, stiffness, and anxiety (p = 0.001). They also felt more relaxed and mentally well.
  4. Van de Donk et al. (2019):
    • Study Design: Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT). Inhaled cannabis versus placebo.
    • Results: THC cannabis helped people handle pressure pain better, but not spontaneous pain. CBD made the THC less helpful.
  5. Yassin et al. (2019):
    • Study Design: Observational Study (OBS). People used cannabis along with other pain medicines.
    • Results: People using cannabis along with other medicines felt better after 3 and 6 months compared to before (significant improvement in all patient-reported outcomes). Mobility also improved significantly.
  6. Sagy et al. (2019):
    • Study Design: Observational Study (OBS). People used cannabis in different forms.
    • Results: Most people felt less pain after using cannabis (p < 0.001), and many felt much better (81.1% reported a treatment response). Mild side effects like dizziness and dry mouth were common.
  7. Chaves et al. (2020):
    • Study Design: Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT). People used cannabis oil or a different oil.
    • Results: People who used cannabis oil felt much better in lots of ways (significant decrease in FIQ score and improvements in various symptoms). The placebo group also reported improvements in depression.

“Characteristics of medical cannabis usage among patients with fibromyalgia”

This study assessed the data provided by fibromyalgia patients at two hospitals in Israel, seeking to understand how effective medical cannabis is as a fibromyalgia treatment.

The following results were found from the 101 patients that completed the study:

  • Improvement in sleep and pain was slightly more than 77% with less improvement in other parameters.
  • 36% of the patients reported weight gain, while 16% reported weight loss.
  • 51% reported having more leisure time outdoors.

“The Consumption of Cannabis by Fibromyalgia Patients in Israel”

This study consisted of an Internet-based questionnaire was posted to three large fibromyalgia Facebook groups in Israel.

The following results were found from the 384 respondents:

  • 84% reported consuming cannabis.
  • 94% reported pain relief.
  • 93% reported improved sleep quality.
  • 87% reported improvement in depression.
  • 62% reported improvement in anxiety.

“The role of cannabis in treatment-resistant fibromyalgia women”

This study aimed to use the World Health Organization Quality of Life Bref questionnaire to characterise the impact of medical cannabis on fibromyalgia.

Result from this study found that cannabis treatment for 30 days showed a marked improvement in general quality of life (1.97 scores, p < 0.01), general health (1.83, p < 0.01), physical health (1.5, p < 0.01), and psychological domain (1.3, p < 0.01). Financial resources and home environment were not influenced by cannabis treatment (p = 0.07, p = 0.31, respectively).

How can Script Assist help you?

Script Assist can connect you to a private doctor that can prescribe cannabis for fibromyalgia in the UK and ensure that you have a seamless experience.  

  • Easily find a private pain specialist that can prescribe medical cannabis for fibromyalgia.
  • Effortlessly book, pay & join a consultation through your App.
  • Track your medicinal cannabis prescription with total transparency.
  • Request and pay for your monthly repeat request through the Script Assist App.
  • Pay by 3pm for next-day delivery before 1pm Monday-Saturday.

Ready to Find a Pain Specialist Who Can Prescribe Cannabis for Fibromyalgia?

Frequently asked Questions

An online platform enabling medical cannabis prescribing from any private setting.

There are two main ways of accessing medical cannabis for fibromyalgia in the UK; Patients can either go to the Script Assist Find a Doctor page to choose a pain specialist that prescribes medical cannabis for fibromyalgia or contact a cannabis clinic.

  • CBD oil for fibromyalgia pain has been a hot topic of discussion for patients in the UK, since the availability of consumer CBD oil products has expanded in the UK.
  • Pain doctors prescribing medical cannabis for fibromyalgia will typically prescribe products that contain both THC and CBD, often in addition to all of the other compounds found in the cannabis plant (i.e. “whole-plant” medical cannabis).

Consumer CBD products are not meant for medical use therefore any claims of consumer CBD oil for fibromyalgia treatment should be challenged.

Consumer CBD products are not meant for medical use therefore any claims of being the best CBD oil for fibromyalgia treatment should be challenged.

Cannabis patches are available for purchase as CBD consumer products in the UK however, however any claims of specifically being cannabis patches for fibromyalgia treatment should be challenged.

Whether CBD works for fibromyalgia or whether CBD oil work for fibromyalgia is something that we cover in the section above entitled “What evidence exists for fibromyalgia and cannabis?”

  • For patients wanting to understand how much CBD for fibromyalgia or what CBD dosage for fibromyalgia, they should consider having a consultation with a Script Assist enabled pain management specialist to discuss product and dosage further.
  • Speak to a pain management specialist today to discuss how much CBD oil for fibromyalgia or whether a product containing both THC and CBD may be preferable.
  • For those wanting to know whether CBD be prescribed for fibromyalgia in the UK, the simple answer is yes!
  • However, most prescriptions for cannabis as a fibromyalgia treatment are not for CBD alone but a product that contains both CBD and THC.