Fibromyalgia (FM) in Indian patients with SLE

One hundred and fifty-eight patients with SLE were prospectively
studied at a tertiary referral centre in India to ascertain
the prevalence and clinical profile of fibromyalgia (FM) in
Indian patients with lupus. An attempt was made to determine
whether socio-demographic factors or disease characteristics
differ in SLE patients with and without FM. Only 13 patients
(8.2%) in our cohort were found to have fibromyalgia. Their
clinical profiles were similar to that reported in other
series. Corticosteroid withdrawal or dose reduction was the
probable precipitating factor in nearly one-third of our
patients. Age, sex, marital status, educational level, disease
duration, disease activity and the organ involvement in
patients with SLE and FM were comparable to those in patients
not having FM. Fibromyalgia appears to be distinctly uncommon
in Indian patients with lupus. A strong family support system,
the virtual lack of disability benefits and/or racial
variations in pain threshold could be the likely factors
responsible for the low prevalence of the disease observed in
Indian patients with SLE.

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