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Depression Linked to Poorer Outcomes in Patients with Fibromyalgia

0 2 years ago

Depression, an important modifiable factor in the management of fibromyalgia, was associated with poorer outcomes. Future guidelines should focus on the importance of both identifying and treating depression when fibromyalgia is diagnosed, according to a study published in Journal of Primary Care & Community Health.1

“Depression has been a controversial issue in the conceptualization and treatment of fibromyalgia, and the 2 disorders are linked in important ways,” investigators stated. “Fibromyalgia patients have 3 times the rate of depression compared to those without fibromyalgia. Greater than 50% of patients with fibromyalgia have lifetime depression. There is a significant overlap in symptoms resulting in theories that posit fibromyalgia is merely a depressive equivalent or an affective syndrome disorder due to shared symptom presentation.”

A longitudinal treatment outcome study analyzed the prevalence of depression symptoms in patients with fibromyalgia in a tertiary care center. Investigators studied the impact of depression on functional outcomes after patients completed an intensive outpatient multicomponent fibromyalgia treatment program, which consisted of 16 hours (2 days) of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) as the intervention strategy. The Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire Revised (FIQR) was used to determine functional status and the Center for Epidemiologic Study of Depression (CES-D) measure was used to evaluate depression. These measures were administered at baseline and then 5 months after completing the program, via mailed surveys. Eligible patients had a fibromyalgia diagnosis, as confirmed by physicians using the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) criteria.

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