Lifestyle-Oriented Treatments for Fibromyalgia

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Lifestyle-oriented non-pharmacological treatments for fibromyalgia: A clinical overview and applications with home-based technologies
– Source: Journal of Pain Research, October 25, 2012

By Fred Freidberg, David A. Williams, William Collinge


Fibromyalgia (FM) is a persistent and disabling widespread pain condition often accompanied by chronic fatigue, cognitive problems, sleep disturbance, depression, anxiety, and headache.

To date, the most thoroughly studied non-pharmacological approaches to managing FM are those with a focus on changing patient activities and beliefs that affect the illness. These interventions are intended to facilitate enduring improvement in pain and functional status.

Lifestyle-oriented treatments include

  • patient education,

  • aerobic or other physical exercise,

  • and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT).

These interventions in FM can be delivered in medical or behavioral health care settings by trained professionals, through patient-oriented treatment manuals, or via remote-access technologies. Non-pharmacological treatments, in particular exercise and CBT, have yielded effect sizes and cost–benefit ratios comparable to medications.

This paper describes lifestyle-oriented non-pharmacological treatments for FM and highlights selected literature reviews of these interventions. In addition, behavioral and practical issues are addressed that may affect these non-pharmacological treatments, including patient expectations, participant burden, and treatment availability.

Recommendations are made to facilitate these interventions and potentially improve outcomes. In particular, the increasing availability of convenient home-based mobile technologies to deliver these non-pharmacological treatments is described.

Source: Journal of Pain Research, October 25, 2012. By Fred Freidberg, David A. Williams, William Collinge. Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Science, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook, New York.

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One thought on “Lifestyle-Oriented Treatments for Fibromyalgia”

  1. IanH says:

    Its hard to accept this stuff. Vague descriptions of therapy and outcomes we do not need anymore.

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