Breakthrough Research Reveals Cause of Fibromyalgia. Really?
Breakthrough Fibromyalgia Research: More Hype Than Hope
The “revolutionary breakthrough” study made a big splash in the news. Numerous headlines were similar to this one:
“Breakthrough Study Reveals Cause of Fibromyalgia”
Healthline News Reported it with this headline:
Scientists Pinpoint Physical Cause of Fibromyalgia Pain
Their article went on to report –
“New research literally places the cause of fibromyalgia in the palm of your hand. It’s welcome news for those who suffer from the condition, who cannot find relief from body aches and fatigue and are often told by doctors that the pain is all in their heads.
In a study published in this month’s issue of Pain Medicine, scientists at Integrated Tissue Dynamics (Intidyn) in New York report that the cause of fibromyalgia is actually an abnormality in the palms of patients’ hands.”
The article goes on to reveal what you’ve probably already guessed-
“The condition can currently be treated by three medications made by Forest and Eli Lilly: Cymbalta, Lyrica, and Savella.”
It shouldn’t surprise anyone to learn that Eli Lilly and Forest Laboratories paid for the study.
Other sensational headlines were just as misleading including this one:
“Nerve Damage Found in Nearly Half of Fibromyalgia Patients”
Of course half of fibromyalgia patients, means 18 patients out of a possible 24 in this VERY small and HEAVILY promoted study.
“Important Stepping Stone to Finding Cause of Fibro Pain Discovered”
The article concludes:
“This study represents an exciting step forward in determining the root causes of Fibromyalgia, finding more effective ways to treat Fibromyalgia, determining ways to prevent Fibromyalgia and developing a cure for Fibromyalgia. ”
More Medical Myth Than Substance
This is what happens when “health reporters” with limited medical knowledge, fall prey to drug sponsored, public relations propaganda-writing attention-grabbing articles. The facts are mostly right, the explanation is adequate, but the interpretation and conclusion are completely unfounded.
The problem lies in the selection of patients and the small number (N=24). Who knows if this is only found in fibromyalgia patients and not also in patients suffering from hypertension, other forms of chronic pain, and so on? The researchers approached the two pharmaceutical drug companies with a proposal for doing research to further support the use of their drugs-Cymbalta, Savella, and Lyrica and most likely similar drugs in the works, yet to be released but needing “unbiased research” to launch them onto the market.
I’m all for more research being done on fibromyalgia, the causes and treatments, but hopefully there will be more substance in future studies, certainly more than this one provides. In Texas they’d say this study is “all hat and no cattle.”
I highly recommend you read a critique of the flawed report and over-simplification of the study by a German rheumatologist at the link below.
Rheumatologe: Fibromyalgia and Excessive Peptidergic Sensory Innervation of Cutaneous Arteriole-Venule Shunts (AVS) in the Palmar Glabrous Skin
If you want to know what we do know, without a doubt about the cause and only true way to reverse fibromyalgia join me on my FREE treating and Beating Fibromyalgia Teleconferences.
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