Fibromyalgia is a chronic, musculoskeletal, non-inflammatory pain disorder. Patients frequently suffer from sleep disturbances, headaches, anxiety, morning stiffness, and a poor sense of well-being. It is estimated that approximately 6 million Americans live with this condition.
Fibromyalgia is characterized by the presence of at least 11 tender points, as well as widespread bilateral pain for at least 3 months. If left untreated, it may lead to a significant impairment in patients’ quality of life or even disability. Although the exact pathophysiology of fibromyalgia remains a source of speculation, several treatment modalities are available to patients with this condition. (1)
The disorder is thought to represent an alteration in pain threshold or sensory processing at the level of the spinal cord or higher cortical levels. No cure is known, and available treatments are only partially effective. Fibromyalgia affects 2% of the general population: 3.4% women and 0.5% men. (3) Fibromyalgia patients treated with six sessions of acupuncture experienced significant symptomatic improvement compared to a group given simulated acupuncture… (2) Acupuncture treatments for fibromyalgia (FMS) are becoming much more common, either alone or as a complementary therapy. Multiple studies from both the East and the West suggest that acupuncture is effective for treating FMS. Meta analyses of acupuncture for FMS conclude that it appears to be a beneficial treatment, but that further high-quality research is needed.
1. Rosenzweig TM, Thomas T, 2011, An Update on Fibromyalgia Syndrome: The Multimodal Therapeutic Approach, http://ajl.sagepub.com/content/3/3/226.abstract
2. Acupuncture relieves symptoms of fibromyalgia http://www.news-medical.net/news/2005/08/25/12699.aspx
3. Wolfe F, Ross K, Anderson J, Russell IJ. Aspects of fibromyalgia in the general population: sex, pain threshold, and fibromyalgia symptoms.
© Haynes Acupuncture Gold Coast