Disordered sleep is such a prominent symptom in fibromyalgia that the American College of Rheumatology included symptoms such as waking unrefreshed, fatigue, tiredness, and insomnia in the 2010 diagnostic criteria for fibromyalgia.
Even though sleep recording is not part of the routine evaluation, polysomnography may disclose primary sleep disorders in patients with fibromyalgia, including obstructive sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome.
In addition, genetic background and environmental susceptibility link fibromyalgia and further sleep disorders.
• Among nonpharmacological treatment proposed for sleep disturbance in fibromyalgia, positive results have been obtained with sleep hygiene and cognitive-behavioral therapy. The effect of exercise is contradictory, but overweight or obese patients with fibromyalgia should be encouraged to lose weight.
• Regarding the approved antidepressants, amitriptyline [trade name Elavil] proved to be superior to duloxetine [Cymbalta] and milnacipran [Savella] for sleep disturbances.
• New perspectives remain on the narcolepsy drug sodium oxybate [Xyrem], which recently was approved for sleep management in fibromyalgia.
Source: Current Pain and Headache Reports, May 20, 2011. PubMed ID: 21594765, by Roizenblatt S, Neto NS, Tufik S. Departamento de Psicobiologia, Universidade Federal de São Paulo, Brazil. [Email: firstname.lastname@example.org]