The complexities of fibromyalgia and its comorbidities

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Abstract

Purpose of review

Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is defined as chronic, widespread musculoskeletal pain and tenderness with concomitant mood and cognitive dysfunction. Several comorbidities have been reported to be associated with FMS. We reviewed the literature concerning the most noteworthy chronic conditions associated with FMS.

Recent findings

There is mounting evidence displaying the concurrence of fibromyalgia and coexisting medical and psychiatric conditions. Such comorbidities may blur the classical clinical presentations and erroneously lead to misinterpretation of disease activity. The recognition of this fact should be underlined, as misrecognition may lead to excessive therapy and avoidable side-effects of medications on the one hand and to a better handling of FMS on the other hand, leading to improved clinical outcomes.

Summary

A greater proportion of psychiatric and rheumatologic disorders are associated with FMS patients than the population. Consequently, physicians treating patients with either condition should keep in mind that these patients may have such comorbidities and should be treated accordingly.

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