Fibromyalgia is classed as a disorder of pain processing due to abnormalities in how pain signals are processed in the central nervous system. 1
Antidepressants are now the most widely studied and, for certain, the most successful therapy of fibromyalgia (Goldenberg et al 2004 2; Bennett 2005 3) 4
Also according to an article on fibromyalgia-symptoms.org 5 when people with fibromyalgia receive antidepressant prescriptions, it is typically in order to interrupt pain cycles and restore restful sleep. Antidepressants are prescribed in lower-than-usual doses in order to treat these symptoms.
It seems that antidepressants are only used to reduce fibromyalgia related symptoms such as interruption of pain cycles and restoring restful sleep. Can't those symptoms be managed with pain killers (NSAIDs) and sleeping medication? Don't anti-depressants have a lot of unwanted side-effects like suppressing (sensing of) certain brain activity? I don't understand why anti-depressants are used in this case.