Nat Clin Pract Rheumatol. 2006 Jul;2(7):364-72.
Therapy Insight: fibromyalgia--a different type of pain needing a different type of treatment.
In the past decade, we have made tremendous progress in our understanding of fibromyalgia, which is now recognized as one of many 'central' pain syndromes that are common in the general population. Specific genes that might confer an increased risk of developing fibromyalgia syndrome are beginning to be identified and the environment (in this case exposure to stressors) might also have a significant effect on triggering the expression of symptoms. After developing the syndrome, the hallmark aberration noted in individuals with fibromyalgia is augmented central pain processing. Insights from research suggest that fibromyalgia and related syndromes require a multimodal management program that is different from the standard used to treat peripheral pain (i.e. acute or inflammatory pain). Instead of the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and opioids commonly used in the treatment of peripheral pain, the recommended drugs for central pain conditions are neuroactive compounds that downregulate sensory processing. The most efficacious compounds that are currently available include the tricyclic drugs and mixed reuptake inhibitors that simultaneously increase serotonin and norepinephrine concentrations in the central nervous system. Other compounds that increase levels of single monoamines (serotonin, norepinephrine or dopamine), and anticonvulsants also show efficacy in this condition. In addition to these pharmacologic therapies, which are useful in improving symptoms, nonpharmacologic therapies such as exercise and cognitive behavioral therapy are useful treatments for restoring function to an individual with fibromyalgia.
PMID: 16932722 [PubMed - in process]
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