Low-dose naltrexone (LDN) For chronic pain a pain reducing drug
LDN can alleviate pain by reducing the “inflammation” that occurs in the brain and spinal cord of patients with chronic pain, including fibromyalgia, low back pain, or osteoarthritis.
LDN decreases “brain inflammation”
The purpose of the immune system is to heal injured or inflamed areas in the body. Special cells, including the microglial cell, located in the brain and spinal cord travel to the injured site and perform their restorative functions. In the case of fibromyalgia, however, the immune system remains overactive and thus contributes to pain and hyperalgesia.
Naltrexone specifically targets the source of the overactive inflammatory response– the microglial cell. LDN stimulates the production of the body’s endorphins, also known as the body’s “natural opioids”. LDN also triggers the production of enkephalin, a messenger that commands the immune system to decrease the production of an inflammatory agent called substance P.
With increased levels of endorphins and enkephalins as well as decreased activity of the microglia, many patients may experience relief from pain and fatigue.