European review for medical and pharmacological sciences

Treatment-resistant insomnia treated with pregabalin.

PMID 23771546


We report a case with refractory insomnia. We diagnosed her case as depression with high levels of anxiety, weakness, with diminished ability to think or concentrate and with a sensory-motor disorder. Although this last symptom was very distressing, it did not satisfy the criteria for RLS (Restless Legs Syndrome). After treatment with paroxetine (20 mg) and zolpidem (10 mg), anxiety and mood deflection were attenuated. Nevertheless, a mild depression, an intermittent awakening (fragmentation of the sleep-wake rhythm) and subsyndromal RLS persisted. Her resistant insomnia was treated with benzodiazepine sleeping drugs (triazolam 0.25 mg, lorazepam 2.5 mg, fluorazepam 30 mg) with only partial insomnia remission, antidepressants (trazodone 150 mg RP, mirtazapine 15-30 mg, agomelatine 50 mg) and antipsychotics (levomepromazine 25 mg, zuclopentixol 25 mg) without results. Her intractable insomnia was markedly responsive to pregabalin without side effects. Our hypothesis is that the therapy with pregabalin may be indicated for resistant insomnia associated with subsyndromal RLS, even when the latter does not satisfy fully all the criteria for diagnosis.