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Skin-related Symptoms in Fibromyalgia

  [ 47 votes ]   [ 2 Comments ] • January 24, 2014

Editor's comment: Skin-related problems are a common complaint among people with fibromyalgia. Some of the most common dermatologic symptoms include dry skin, itching (pruritus), rashes and mottled skin. The purpose of this study was to identify the various types of skin problems experienced by FM patients and to determine how common they are.

Dermatologic Manifestations of Fibromyalgia.

By Valerie Laniosz, David A. Wetter and Desiree A. Godar


The aim of this study was to determine the common dermatologic diagnoses and skin-related symptoms in a cohort of patients with fibromyalgia seen in a tertiary referral center.

A retrospective chart review was performed of all patients with a fibromyalgia diagnosis from January 1 to December 31, 2008, whose diagnosis was confirmed in the Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Clinic at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Charts were reviewed for dermatologic conditions and cutaneous symptoms. Demographic and clinical data were collected to assess the frequency of skin-related issues in patients with fibromyalgia.

Of 2,233 patients screened, 845 patients met the inclusion criteria of having a confirmed diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Among these fibromyalgia patients, various dermatologic conditions and cutaneous problems were identified, including

  • hyperhidrosis in 270 (32.0 %),

  • burning sensation of the skin or mucous membranes in 29 (3.4 %),

  • and various unusual cutaneous sensations in 14 (1.7 %).

  • Pruritus without identified cause was noted by 28 patients (3.3 %),

  • with another 16 patients (1.9 %) reporting neurotic excoriations, prurigo nodules, or lichen simplex chronicus.

  • Some form of dermatitis other than neurodermatitis was found in 77 patients (9.1 %).

Patients with fibromyalgia may have skin-related symptoms associated with their fibromyalgia. No single dermatologic diagnosis appears to be overrepresented in this population, with the exception of a subjective increase in sweating.

Source: Clinical Rheumatology, January 14, 2014. By Valerie Laniosz, David A. Wetter and Desiree A. Godar. Department of Dermatology, Mayo Clinic, 200 First St SW, Rochester, MN, 55905, USA.

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Article Comments Post a Comment

Posted by: IanH
Jan 24, 2014
There is no comparison to controls. That would have been helpful.

However the people I know with FM+ME have this range of skin problems. Dryness and itching being the main two aside from crawling sensations and sharp pain jabs.
Reply Reply

Posted by: LouisVA
Jan 21, 2015
I agree with IanH that the study has no controls; however, I do have bothersome skin problems and I am a fibro patient.


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