OBJECTIVE: Twenty-two children with fibromyalgia (FM), found
in a population based study of 1756 Finnish preadolescents,
were prospectively and blindly followed for one year to
investigate their physical and psychological background
factors and to determine the one year persistence of FM.
METHODS: The American College of Rheumatology 1990 criteria
for FM were used. Widespread pain was determined with a
structured, pretested pain questionnaire, including items on
disability both at baseline and at followup. At baseline,
hypermobility was tested with Beighton’s method and aerobic
capacity with a 20 m shuttle run test, and psychological data
were collected using the Children’s Depression Inventory
(CDI), a sleep questionnaire, and the Child Behavior Checklist
and Teacher’s Report Form. At followup, evaluations with the
CDI and sleep questionnaire were repeated.
baseline, the prevalence of FM was 1.3% (95% CI 0.8 to 1.9).
At followup, 16/22 (73%) children were available for
evaluation; 4 (25%) had persistent FM. Children with FM had
low pain thresholds. Only one of 19 children had
hypermobility. Those with persistent FM had persistent
subjective disability. Depressive symptoms diminished, but
there was still comorbidity of pain and depressive symptoms at
CONCLUSION: This study supports a previous one, in
which FM in children had a good outcome. However, fluctuation
of pain symptoms in children might partly explain the outcome.
Children with persistent FM showed persistent disability with
a number of distress symptoms.