Pain Home > Savella

Savella is medication licensed to treat fibromyalgia. It is a type of serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor that affects certain chemicals within the brain. Although the medication cannot cure fibromyalgia, it can significantly reduce pain and improve physical functioning. Savella comes in tablet form and is typically taken twice a day. Potential side effects include insomnia, constipation, and nausea.

What Is Savella?

Savella® (milnacipran hydrochloride) is a prescription medication approved for the treatment of fibromyalgia. Although it is not a cure for this condition, the medication can help decrease pain and improve physical functioning.
 
(Click Savella Uses for more information, including possible off-label uses.)
 

Who Makes This Medication?

Savella is made by Forest Laboratories, Inc.
 

How Does Savella Work?

Savella is part of a class of drugs called serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, or SNRIs for short. SNRIs affect specific chemicals within the brain known as serotonin and norepinephrine. These are two of several chemicals used to send messages from one nerve cell to another.
 
As a message travels down a nerve, it causes the end of the cell to release serotonin or norepinephrine. The serotonin or norepinephrine enters the gap between the first nerve cell and the one next to it. When enough serotonin or norepinephrine reaches the second nerve cell, it activates receptors on the cell, and the message continues on its way. The first cell then quickly absorbs any serotonin or norepinephrine that remains in the gap between the cells. This is called "reuptake."
 
Although Savella is an SNRI medication, it is not entirely clear how it works for fibromyalgia pain.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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