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An avalanche of useless fibromyalgia research 

Paul Ingraham ARCHIVEDMicroblog posts are archived and rarely updated. In contrast, most long-form articles on PainScience.com are updated regularly over the years.

Dr. Fred Wolfe is about as expert as a fibromyalgia expert gets: he’s largely responsible for the official diagnostic criteria for fibromyalgia (the original in 1990 and then the important revisions in 2010/11, which ditched “tender points” and factored in symptom severity, in a nutshell).

Since 2013, Dr. Wolfe has been blogging erratically, and in this short post he explains (with snark!) how fibromyalgia is being buried by an avalanche of crappy, useless research. (And you could substitute nearly any other difficult or controversial condition, like “trigger points” for instance.)

PubMed reports 659 publications in the last 12 months relating to fibromyalgia. For those who are interested, there are 9,366 articles listed in the all the years that data are available. For 1990, the year the American College of Rheumatology 1990 fibromyalgia criteria were published, PubMed cites 95 articles. If you think that after all these years of research you and your patients are much better off, think again. A kind, conscientious physician treating a fibromyalgia patient in 1980 or 1990 will have done as well as the 2016 health workers with access to all of these new publications and expensive if not very efficacious medications.

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