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Vitamin D in Fibromyalgia: A Causative or Confounding Biological Interplay?

PainSci » bibliography » Karras et al 2016
Tags: etiology, fibromyalgia, vitamin D, pro, chronic pain, pain problems, nutrition, self-treatment, treatment

One article on PainSci cites Karras 2016: Vitamin D for Pain

PainSci notes on Karras 2016:

A review of the possible relationship between vitamin D and fibromyalgia, concluding that there probably is one, albeit poorly understood:

“Overall, although a cause and effect relationship has not been proven yet, available evidence indicates, that vitamin D is a vital bioregulator of pain pathways involved in FM pathogenesis. … Hypovitaminosis D may be a risk factor for FM and a way of worsening the symptoms through central and peripheral pathways. The exact mechanisms however, by which vitamin D may be related with FM remain unclear.”

Dense and technical, but worthwhile for readers who can take it.

original abstract Abstracts here may not perfectly match originals, for a variety of technical and practical reasons. Some abstacts are truncated for my purposes here, if they are particularly long-winded and unhelpful. I occasionally add clarifying notes. And I make some minor corrections.

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a chronic syndrome with an increasing prevalence, characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain in combination with a variety of cognitive symptoms and fatigue. A plethora of scientific evidence that has accumulated during the last decades, resulted in a significant improvement of the understanding of the pathophysiology of the disease. However, current therapeutic approaches in patients with FM remains a multidimensional approach including patient education, behavioral therapy, exercise, pain management, and relief of chronic symptoms, rather than the use drug therapies, based on the mechanisms of disease development. Vitamin D, a fat-soluble vitamin derived mainly from skin synthesis through ultraviolet radiation, has been recognized to manifest a plethora of extraskeletal actions, apart from its fundamental role in skeletal and calcium homeostasis, including modulation of cell growth, neuromuscular actions, and potential anti-inflammatory properties. Recent findings indicate that hypovitaminosis D to be highly prevalent in patients with FM. Supplementation studies are limited so far, indicating potential beneficial effects on pain and severity of the disease, however specific recommendations are lacking. This review aims to summarize and critically appraise data regarding the pathophysiological interplay between vitamin D and FM, available results from observational and supplementation studies so far, with a clinical discourse on current knowledge gaps and future research agenda.

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