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Increased Frequency of Gastrointestinal Symptoms in Patients with Fibromyalgia and Associated Factors: A Comparative Study - Source: Journal of Rheumatology, Jun 30, 2009

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By ON Pamuk, et al. • www.ProHealth.com • July 2, 2009


Objective: To determine the frequency and severity of gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia (FM).

Methods: We included 152 women with FM (mean age 45.4 +/- 12.2 yrs), 98 women with rheumatoid arthritis (RA; mean age 45.5 +/- 12.3 yrs), and 60 healthy female controls (mean age 44 +/- 11.3 yrs). All patients were questioned about the severity of their chronic widespread pain, symptoms of FM, symptoms of dyspepsia [upset stomach/indigestion], using a visual analog scale (VAS), and anxiety-depression scale. Patients were asked self-reported (yes/no), symptom-based (>/= 2 criteria) constipation and severity of constipation questions, and about the severity of quality of life (QOL) disturbance secondary to dyspepsia and constipation.

Results:

Patients with FM had higher symptom severities for belching, reflux, bloating, sour taste, and vomiting than patients with RA and controls (all p values < 0.01).

Patients with FM had significantly more dyspepsia-related QOL disturbances than the other 2 groups (p < 0.01).

FM and RA patients had more frequent self-reported constipation than controls (respectively, 42.1%, 48%, 21.7%; p < 0.01).

The frequency of symptom-based constipation was significantly higher in the RA group (49%) than in FM (29.6%) and control groups (23.3%) (p < 0.01).

Constipation-related QOL disturbance was significantly higher in patients with FM than in controls (p < 0.01).

Conclusion: In patients with FM, the severity scores of dyspepsia symptoms, constipation, and dyspepsia-related QOL disturbance were higher than in patients with RA and controls. The higher GI symptom severity in patients with FM might have negative effects on their QOL.

Source: Journal of Rheumatology, Jun 30, 2009. PMID: 19567625, by Pamuk ON, Umit H, Harmandar O. Departments of Rheumatology, Gastroenterology, and Internal Medicine, Trakya University Medical Faculty, Edirne, Turkey.





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