Having Problems Sleeping? You Are at Greater Risk for Fibromylgia, Study Says - Page 2
To examine this relationship between sleep and fibromyalgia, researchers asked for all adult women in Norway's Nord-Trondelag County to volunteer for their longitudinal study. The 12,350 who women filled out two questionnaires and were clinically examined during the periods between 1984 and 1986, and 1995 and 1997. They did not have chronic musculoskeletal pain at the study beginning. A total of 327 women reported having been given a diagnosis of fibromyalgia.
After further comparison of women at various ages, and controlling for variables like smoking, physical exercise, body mass and education, they found women 45 and older who had frequent sleeping problems had a higher rate ratio for fibromyalgia while younger women's ratio was lower. After comparing 3,949 women with sleep problems with 8,401 who didn't, they found that those who did had a higher rate ratio for fibromyalgia. Researchers concluded that among women with sleep problems "about two-thirds of the incident cases of fibromyalgia are caused by sleep problems."
A professor at the University of Washington School of Nursing in Seattle, Carol A. Landis, noted that a history of physical or psychological trauma might contribute to exacerbating the disease. The study did not examine this or other factors like adjusting for women going through menopause. However, the study is a step in the right direction in investigating the effects of irregular sleep or sleep disturbance on disease entities.
"The weight of the evidence really supports the important role of sleep in fibromyalgia, We don't always understand what the biological mechanisms are underlying that association between sleep and pain, but clearly there's an important connection."