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Abstract: Psychosocial aspects of chronic widespread pain and fibromyalgia

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Disabil Rehabil. 2005 Jun;27(12):675-83.

Bergman S.

Purpose. To study the impact on health status as measured by SF-36 in groups of subjects having chronic musculoskeletal pain with different degree of generalization: No chronic pain (NCP), chronic regional pain (CRP), chronic widespread pain (CWP), CWP with a stricter ‘Manchester’ definition (CWP-M), and clinically defined fibromyalgia (FM). The study also examines the association between psychosocial and lifestyle background variables, and these pain-groups.

Method. A cross-sectional study with a postal survey to 3928 subjects, constituting a representative sample of the adult general population, followed by clinical examination in a selected group of subjects with CWP. CWP and FM were diagnosed according to ACR 1990 fibromyalgia criteria. Health status was measured by SF-36 Health Survey.

Results. Patients with CWP, CWP-M, and FM were found to present with more severe impairment of health status than the other two population groups.

Several psychosocial factors, such as belonging to a lower socio-economic group, being an immigrant, living in a compromised housing area, having lower educational level, experiencing lower social support and having a family history of chronic pain, were associated with the populations with CWP and FM.

Conclusions. The spectrum of impact on health and association to background variables, with respect to a stricter definition of CWP, indicates that these factors are important to attend to in the understanding and management of CWP and FM.

PMID: 16012060 [PubMed – in process]

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