Magnetic stimulation may reduce psychiatric symptoms of fibromyalgia

Post written by Master - Doctor Mai Vien Phuong - Head of Department of Gastrointestinal Endoscopy - Department of Medical Examination & Internal Medicine - Vinmec Central Park International General Hospital
A form of brain stimulation therapy called repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) can help relieve some of the painless symptoms of fibromyalgia, including emotional distress and pain. improves overall quality of life for patients living with the disease, according to a new study published in the journal Neurology. This technique may provide a safe, easy, and non-invasive way to treat the social and emotional symptoms of the disease.

1. What is fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disorder that causes long-term pain and tenderness in joints, muscles, and tendons throughout the body, as well as severe fatigue. People with fibromyalgia may also experience a number of other symptoms, including sleep disturbances, irritable bowel syndrome, restless legs syndrome, numbness or tingling in the arms and legs, and depression, according to the Institute. National Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMSD) of the United States.
Fibromyalgia affects an estimated 5 million American adults, and 80 to 90 percent of those diagnosed are women, according to NIAMSD.
Currently, over-the-counter prescription drugs and pain relievers are the mainstays of treatment for fibromyalgia. The researchers hope the results of this study will lead to a new way to relieve some of the more stubborn symptoms of the disease.

2. Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy (rTMS)

In a press release, study author Dr Eric Guedj said, “rTMS is a way to alter the brain's ability to arousal. Such a treatment could be a safe and non-invasive addition to pain medication in some people.”
Previous studies have found abnormalities in brain function in some fibromyalgia patients, Guedj said in an expert panel discussion. These brain regions are accessible by rTMS, but these studies did not examine rTMS as a potential treatment.
Máy kích thích từ tính giúp an toàn trong giảm đau cơ xơ hóa
“Other colleagues have reported interest in rTMS for fibromyalgia — I know of two clinical trials,” says Guedj. "Our study is the first to combine the rTMS clinical trial with brain function exploration to better understand the mechanism of action of this therapy in fibromyalgia."
Guedj said: “Previous neuroimaging studies in patients with fibromyalgia have suggested alterations in brain processes involved in pain and emotion regulation. The goal of our study was to demonstrate that it is possible to modulate brain regions, using rTMS to correct abnormalities in brain function and improve patient symptoms."
To do this, Guedj and his colleagues performed a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Of these, 38 adults with fibromyalgia for more than 6 months were assigned to receive rTMS stimulation or sham with a similar-looking device.
In the 10-week study, which included 14 sessions of rTMS or sham stimulation, researchers assessed quality of life, depression, anxiety, and pain at three time points: At baseline, after 2 weeks and after 11 weeks. Changes in quality of life were measured by questionnaire and changes in brain metabolism were measured by PET neuroimaging.
Researchers found that, after 11 weeks, high-frequency rTMS across the left primary motor cortex of the brain had a positive impact on the quality of life of fibromyalgia patients without any any effect on pain.
Results from the questionnaire showed that rTMS-treated patients had an average score of 60 on the quality of life scale at the beginning of the study. Scores ranged from 0 to 100, with a lower score corresponding to a better quality of life. After 11 weeks, the average score of the participants receiving rTMS had actually decreased by about 10 points. Those who received the sham stimulation had an initial average of 64, and after 11 weeks, their average score increased by two points.
Guedj said: “This study shows that rTMS improves the quality of life of patients with fibromyalgia, perhaps with a clinical improvement for patients with increased drug exposure.”
Improved quality of life as measured by mood and emotions; emotions such as joy, sadness, anger, and anxiety, and social domains, such as work performance, social interactions and activities, and other interests or concerns.
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Kích thích từ tính giúp cái thiện cuộc sống cho người bệnh đau cơ xơ hóa

3. The Psychological Side of Fibromyalgia

The results of this study shed new light on the emotional and social aspects of fibromyalgia. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America (ADAA), about 20% of people living with pain symptoms from fibromyalgia also have anxiety or depression.
“These side effects – especially those manifesting as sleep disturbances and memory or cognitive impairment – ​​often do not receive the attention they deserve and are not treated as effectively as the other symptoms. pain is often related to disease,” says Guedj.
To treat all symptoms of fibromyalgia, the ADAA recommends seeing one doctor to treat the physical symptoms of the disease and another doctor or therapist for social or emotional symptoms. touch.
In addition to working with your doctor or therapist, NIAMSD recommends incorporating the following healthy practices into your daily routine to help reduce symptoms and improve quality of life:
Practice practice proper sleep hygiene by going to bed at the same time each night and waking up at the same time each morning, avoiding caffeine in the afternoon and evening, and making bed only for sleep and sex . Exercise regularly, even when pain and fatigue make physical exertion difficult. Follow a healthy diet. Work and life changes, such as working fewer hours or finding a less demanding job, are tailored to your specific symptoms and needs. Here is some information on repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) therapy for the psychiatric symptoms of fibromyalgia. You should consult your doctor carefully before deciding on any treatment method. Please follow the website: Vinmec.com regularly to update many other useful information.

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References: nih.gov, arthritis.org, mayoclinic.org

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