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Fibromyalgia syndrome (FS) is most common in midlife, but may be
seen at any age. Its prevalence and assessment of tenderness
in healthy children is not known. We assessed 338 healthy
schoolchildren for tenderness thresholds and prevalence of FS.
In all children a point count of 18 tender points (TP) was
conducted by thumb palpation and tenderness of some of the TP
sites as well as control point sites was further assessed
using a Chatillon dolorimeter. All children and their parents
were questioned about the presence of widespread pain or
aching. Children were considered to have FS if they met the
American College of Rheumatology (ACR) criteria for diagnosis
of FS. Of the 338 children, 21 (6.2%) had FS. Thresholds of
tenderness of 9 TP were 5.0 (1.2) (kg) [mean (standard
deviation)] for boys vs 3.6 (0.8) (kg) for girls (p < 0.001).
Thresholds of tenderness of the control point sites were 7.1
(1.4) (kg) for boys vs 5.5 (1.1) (kg) for girls (p < 0.001).
Thresholds of tenderness of TP and control points in the
children with FS were 2.5 (0.4) (kg) and 4.2 (0.5) (kg) vs 4.5
(1.2) (kg) and 6.6 (1.4) (kg) respectively in the children
without FS (p < 0.001). We suggest that FS is common in the
pediatric age group. Boys have lower tenderness than girls;
children with FS have lower thresholds for tenderness both at
control and TP compared to the subjects without FS.
Buskila D, Press J, Gedalia A, Klein M, Neumann L, Boehm R, Sukenik