Risk factors for Fibromyalgia

Risk factors for Fibromyalgia

What variables contribute to a patient’s predisposition to developing Fibromyalgia?

The etiology of FM is unknown. However, several variables may contribute to a patient’s predisposition to developing FM as well as the severity of the symptoms:

  • • Biologic variables
    • Inheritance: genetic polymorphisms have been reported in the COMT enzyme, serotonin transporter and receptor, and the dopamine, β -adrenergic, glutamate and cannabinoid receptor genes.
    • Female sex: young and middle-aged females most at risk.
    • Sleep architecture abnormalities.
    • Neuroendocrine response to stress: attenuated corticotropin-releasing hormone and insulin-like growth factor-1 (somatomedin C) response.
    • Autonomic dysregulation: postural orthostasis and tachycardia syndrome.
  • • Environmental and sociocultural variables
    • Early life developmental experiences: sexual or physical abuse in childhood.
    • Family variables: spousal and family support systems.
    • Work variables: job satisfaction.
  • • Psychologic variables
    • Personality traits: perfectionist or self-sacrificing personalities are common.
    • Catastrophizing and negative beliefs: belief that pain cannot be controlled.
    • Hypervigilance and preoccupation with pain (which may interfere with therapy).
    • Low self-efficacy and defective coping mechanisms.
    • Depression and anxiety.

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