Introduction • Overweight and obese patients are frequently present with fibromyalgia, characterized by chronic pain, fatigue and depressed mood. • A paper by Akiko Okifuji from the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, just published in the Journal of Pain, examines the relationship between fibromyalgia and obesity in pain, function, mood, and sleep. Notes: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20542742
Study • The study examines the impact of obesity on hyperalgesia, symptoms, physical abilities, and sleep in 215 fibromyalgia patients, who also underwent tender point examination, physical performance testing, and 7-day home sleep assessment. • Almost 50% of participants were obese and an additional 30% were overweight.
Findings • Obesity was positively related to greater tender point sensitivity, reduced physical strength and lower-body flexibility, shorter sleep duration, and greater restlessness during sleep. • The results confirmed that obesity is a prevalent co morbidity of fibromyalgia and the authors suggest that weight management may need to be incorporated into treatments.
Relationship between Excess Weight and Fibromyalgia • In the paper, Okifuji and colleagues also discuss several potential mechanisms linking obesity to fibromyalgia including alterations in the endogenous opioid system, the endocrine system, and systemic inflammation, whereby adipose-tissue derived cytokines may enhance central sensitization. • Clinicians should be aware of the relationship between excess weight and fibromyalgia, which can often pose an important contributor to weight gain and a major barrier to weight management.
About Dr. Arya M. Sharma Dr. Arya M. Sharma, MD/PhD, FRCPC is Professor of Medicine & Chair for Obesity Research and Management at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, Canada. He is also the Medical Director of the Edmonton Capital Health Region’s interdisciplinary Weight Wise Program. Dr. Sharma is also the Scientific Director of the Canadian Obesity Network funded through the federal Networks of Centres Excellence program. Dr. Sharma has authored and co-authored more than 250 scientific articles and has lectured widely on the etiology and management of obesity and related cardiovascular disorders. He sends his informative messages through his blog Dr. Sharma’s Obesity Notes. For more information on Obesity visit; Website: http://www.drsharma.ca/ Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Dr-Arya-Sharma/115328778486319