Myofascial pain syndromes (MPSs) from trigger points (TrPs) and fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) are common musculoskeletal pain conditions that frequently coexist in the same patients.
In recent decades, it has become evident that these entities greatly influence each other’s clinical expression.
• FMS is mainly rooted in the central nervous system, while TrPs have a peripheral origin.
• However, the nociceptive (pain signaling) impulses from TrPs may have significant impact on symptoms of FMS, probably by enhancing the level of central sensitization typical of this condition.
Several attempts have been made to assess the effects of treatment of co-occurring TrPs in FMS. We report the outcomes of these studies showing that local extinction of TrPs in patients with fibromyalgia produces significant relief of FMS pain.
Though further studies are needed, these findings suggest that assessment and treatment of concurrent TrPs in FMS should be systematically performed before any specific fibromyalgia therapy is undertaken.
Source: Current Pain and Headache Reports, May 5, 2011. PMID:21541831 by Giamberardino MA, Affaitati G, Fabrizio A, Costantini R. Pathophysiology of Pain Laboratory, “G. D’Annunzio” Foundation, University of Chieti, Italy, [Email: firstname.lastname@example.org]