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The frequency of transition of chronic low back pain to fibromyalgia (FM)

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In a retrospective study, the outcome of the chronic low back
pain syndrome was investigated in a group of 53 patients.
Average time since the diagnosis was established was 18 years.
25% of the patients–all female but one–developed
fibromyalgia. The criteria of Yunus and Wolfe, modified by
Muller and Lautenschlager, were applied to establish the
diagnosis of fibromyalgia. In 60% of the patients chronic low
back pain persisted at the time of final examination, while 8
patients were asymptomatic. Predictive parameters for the
chance of getting fibromyalgia were sex and postural disorders
such as scoliosis. Other radiological findings, for example
degenerative changes of the spine, did not coincide with the
group of patients who developed fibromyalgia. The predictive
value of pain localisation, number of tender points, presence
and severity of functional and vegetative symptoms, and the
psychosocial situation is uncertain and should be investigated
in further long term prospective studies.

Lapossy E, Maleitzke R, Hrycaj P, Mennet W, Muller W

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