Hi - I would appreciate some advice regarding duloxetine (Cymbalta) and the treatment of sensory symptoms. I am a 48 year old woman and have relapsing remitting MS that has been generally manageable for about 15 years (with some modest ups and downs). I am currently taking Tecfidera. In August, I began having very persistent issues with my legs: feelings of numbness, pins and needles, ticklish feelings, and at times feelings of weakness. The symptoms have prevented me from running, as the sensations become extreme when I try to do so. My neurologist thought it was a relapse but an MRI (neck, low back) with contrast showed no new lesions. She now wonders if the symptoms are from old lesions triggered by some extreme stress in my life this year, and/or menopause. She seems quite perplexed by it. Bloodwork has ruled out vitamin D deficiency and infection, and the MRI showed no signs of a pinched nerve in my back. She would like me to take duloxetine to try to reduce the symptoms. I am a bit reluctant to do so; the side effects are intimidating, among other things. I have never used medication for sensory symptoms before, as they have never lasted this long in the past.
My questions for you:
Do you have experience with sensory symptoms? If so, what has helped? Is there a chance that they might just go away on their own, or is this possibly my “new normal”?
Do you have experience with duloxetine? If so, did it help, and did you have any side effects? Did/do you take it in the morning or evening? Any general advice with this medication?
Thank you in advance for any responses and suggestions.