Differential efficacy of a cognitive – behavioral intervention versus pharmacological treatment in the management of Fibromyalgic syndrome

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Journal: Psychology, Health & Medicine. 2006 Nov;11(4):498-506. Authors and affiliation: Garcia J, Simon MA, Duran M, Canceller J, Aneiros FJ. Department of Psychology, University of A Coruna, Spain. PMID: 17129925

Given that studies about the differential efficacy of existing treatments in Fibromyalgia syndrome are scarce, the aim of this study was to compare the differential efficacy of a cognitive-behavioral and a pharmacological therapy on Fibromyalgia.

Using a randomized controlled clinical trial, 28 Fibromyalgic patients were assigned to one of following experimental conditions:
(a) pharmacological treatment (i.e., cyclobenzaprine),
(b) cognitive-behavioral intervention (i.e., stress inoculation training),
(c) combined pharmacological and cognitive-behavioral treatment, and
(d) no treatment.

The results show the superiority of cognitive-behavioral intervention to reduce the severity of Fibromyalgia both at the end of the treatment and at follow-up.

We conclude that cognitive-behavioral interventions must be considered a primary treatment of Fibromyalgia syndrome.

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