- Sep 5, 2020
- DX FIBRO
Whoops, I forgot to hand the stats in:My eye doctor said she has seen a comorbidity with dry eyes and fibromyalgia.
"Eye pain and dry eye are common in chronic pain patients, with comparable prevalence in musculoskeletal pain patients with (67% pain & 67% dryness) and without fibromyalgia (62% pain, 76% dryness)." So a definite co-morbidity.
That's from a 2018 German study "Eye Pain and Dry Eye in Patients with Fibromyalgia" of 90 muskoskeletal patients, 66 of those fulfilling the FM criteria (1990 ACR). The patients were recruited 2012, so the old 1990 ACR criteria were used, incl. tender points. They mention that the the revised criteria from 2010/11 actually mention dry eyes. Almost all of those with dry eyes had "dry eye syndrom".
Pain descriptors used between 25 and 50% of them were: flashing, pressing, pulling, burning, rasping, tiring, gruelling (25%), annoying, and above 50% itchy. This is interesting, as they are sensory rather than affective (= emotional). *
In line with previous studies.
Dryer eyes are connected to higher severity of FM.
"The present study found relatively few cases of abnormal tear function using Schirmer’s test, while the perception of dry eye was prevalent in both groups (FMS and musculoskeletal pain)."
"Dry eye disease seems to be influenced by peripheral and central sensitization and consists of different subtypes with various dysfunctions in the corneal pain system." (E.g. high pain sensitivity, low pain tolerance, hyperesthesia, reduced corneal nerve fiber density found in other studies.)
* For describing pain more exactly the distinction between sensory and affective intrigued me, so I looked it up, but on the fly only found an ancient, but good, psychological study from 1992 Sensory and Affective Components of Pain: Separation and Synthesis, giving the examples: sensory = sharp, throbbing; affective = nagging, terrifying, so relating to tension and fear etc., while saying that they of course are hard to distinguish, e.g. "annoying" may be said to belong to both types.
This underscores exactly what we've often recommended here, trying to cope better by separating the emotional aspect off from the sensory one: the way animals like dogs suffer (@sunkacola), radical acceptance (@Jemima, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy).