Unraveling the Complex Web of Fibromyalgia: A Narrative Review

Al Sharie, S.; Varga, S.J.; Al-Husinat, L.; Sarzi-Puttini, P.; Araydah, M.; Bal’awi, B.R.; Varrassi, G. Unraveling the Complex Web of Fibromyalgia: A Narrative Review. Preprints 2024, 2024010959. doi.org/10.20944/preprints202401.0959.v1

Fibromyalgia is a complex and often misunderstood chronic pain disorder. It is characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain, fatigue, and heightened sensitivity, and has evolved in diag-nostic criteria and understanding over the years. Initially met with skepticism, fibromyalgia is now recognized as a global health concern affecting millions of people, with a prevalence trans-cending demographic boundaries. The clinical features and diagnosis of fibromyalgia encompass a range of symptoms beyond pain, including sleep disturbances and cognitive difficulties. The study emphasizes the importance of a comprehensive evaluation for accurate diagnosis, considering the shift from tender point reliance to a more holistic approach. Etiology and pathophysiology involve genetic predisposition, neurotransmitter dysregulation, central sensitization, and immune system involvement. Risk factors such as gender, age, family history, and comorbid conditions contribute to susceptibility. The impact on quality of life is profound, affecting physical and social aspects, often accompanied by mood disorders. Management approaches include pharmacological interventions, non-pharmacological therapies, lifestyle modifications, and alternative treatments. The study also delves into emerging research, exploring advances in neurobiological understanding, brain imaging, genetic markers, glutamate modulation, cannabinoids, gut microbiome, and digital health tools for fibromyalgia manage-ment. Overall, this study provides a nuanced and up-to-date overview of the complexities sur-rounding fibromyalgia, aiming to enhance understanding and support for individuals grappling with this challenging condition.

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