Author | Dennis C. Turk, PhD

Articles

Fibromyalgia Syndrome: A Guide for the Perplexed

February 01, 2009

Fibromyalgia syndrome is a chronic condition that consists of a pervasive set of unexplained physical symptoms with widespread pain (involving at least 3 of 4 body quadrants and axials) of at least 3 months duration and point tenderness at 9 bilateral locations (Figure) as the cardinal features.1 Patients with FM report a set of symptoms, functional limitations, and psychological dysfunctions, including persistent fatigue (78.2%), sleep disturbance (75.6%), feelings of stiffness (76.2%), headaches (54.3%), depression and anxiety (44.9%), and irritable bowel disorders (35.7%).1 Patients also report cognitive impairment and general malaise, “fibro fog.” This pattern of symptoms has been reported under various names (such as tension myalgia, psychogenic rheumatism, and fibro­myositis) since the early 19th century.