Prevalence of Fibromyalgia Syndrome in low socioeconomic status population
A study in Brazil has found that Fibromyalgia Syndrome is prevalent in a low socioeconomic status population and that prevalanece is similar to that in a more diverse population.
The aim of the study was to estimate the prevalence of Fibromyalgia Syndrome, as well as to assess the major symptoms of this syndrome in an adult, low socioeconomic status population assisted by the primary health care system in a city in Brazil.
The researchers cross-sectionally sampled 768 individuals assisted by the public primary health care system, with an age range of 35-60 years old. Participants were interviewed by phone and screened about pain. They were then invited to be clinically assessed and 304 accepted.
Pain was estimated using a Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) and Fibromyalgia Syndrome was assessed using the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ), as well as screening for tender points using dolorimetry.
From the phone-interview screening, the researchers divided the participants into three groups: No Pain (NP), Regional Pain (RP) and Widespread Pain (WP). Of the 768 participants, 185 were in the NP group, 388 were in the RP group and 106 were in the WP group.
Among the 304 participants taking part in the clinical assessments, the prevalence of Fibromyalgia Syndrome was 4.4% (95% confidence interval [2.6%; 6.3%]).
The researchers also found that the symptoms of pain (VAS and FIQ), feeling well, job ability, fatigue, morning tiredness, stiffness, anxiety and depression were statically different among the groups.
Analysis also showed that the individuals with Fibromyalgia Syndrome and WP had significantly higher levels of impairment than those with RP and NP. Fibromyalgia Syndrome and WP (not Fibromyalgia Syndrome) were similarly disabling.
"Fibromyalgia [Syndrome] is prevalent in the low socioeconomic status population assisted by the public primary health care system. Prevalence was similar to other studies (4.4%) in a more diverse socioeconomic population. Individuals with [Fibromyalgia Syndrome] and WP have significant impact in their well being."
- Assumpcao A, Cavalcante AB, Capela CE, Sauer JF, Chalot SD, Pereira CA, Marques AP. Prevalence of fibromyalgia in low socioeconomic status population. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2009 Jun 8;10(1):64. [Epub ahead of print]