Fibromyalgia Aggravated by PTSD And Their Connection

Fibromyalgia Aggravated by PTSD And Their Connection

Posted On: Mar 22, 2024

A complex interaction between fibromyalgia and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can worsen symptoms and have a major negative influence on a person's quality of life. In this piece, we examine the complex relationship between fibromyalgia and PTSD, looking at the underlying causes, common symptoms, and significance of all-encompassing treatment strategies.

Understanding Fibromyalgia:

Pain and discomfort throughout the body, fatigue, and trouble falling asleep are the symptoms of chronic (long-lasting) fibromyalgia. The source of the illness is not entirely understood by scientists, but individuals who have it experience an increased sensitivity to pain. However, Researchers think a mix of psychological, environmental, and genetic factors are involved.

The Impact of PTSD:

A person may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) if they have been through a stressful event such as a vehicle accident, violent confrontation, or physical or sexual abuse.

Following a traumatic occurrence, fear, grief, or worry are common emotions to feel. But occasionally, those emotions persist. A traumatic event's failure to heal is a hallmark of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

In the absence of treatment, PTSD can linger for years at a time. When memories of the horrific incident are triggered by specific locations or circumstances, people with PTSD may discover that they experience strong emotional and physical reactions.

The Connection Unveiled:

A stressful event can result in fibromyalgia and PTSD. Because it's common for people to have both illnesses, doctors advise anyone with one to get evaluated for the other.

Unfortunately, little is known about the relationships between these two complicated illnesses.

People who suffer from PTSD and fibromyalgia have discovered that their pain frequently has no connection to the trauma they experienced, which may indicate an underlying cause such as central nervous system sensitization.·

It makes sense that there would be a strong correlation between PTSD and fibromyalgia pain, as PTSD is known to cause the nervous system to become sensitized.

Both fibromyalgia and PTSD activate the body's fight-or-flight response, which releases stress hormones like cortisol that irritate nerves.

Nerves transmit messages more readily when cortisol is present. Overly sensitive nerves have the potential to transmit pain signals even in the absence of a physical source.

Biological Mechanisms:

The biological basis for the link between fibromyalgia and PTSD is a dysregulated stress response system. The characteristic of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is chronic stress, which can dysregulate the sympathetic nervous system and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis. This can result in increased inflammation, altered pain processing, and immune system malfunction. These physiological modifications play a role in the onset and aggravation of fibromyalgia symptoms.

Because PTSD and fibromyalgia interact in a complex way, treatment must take a multidisciplinary approach. This could involve using medications like antidepressants and anticonvulsants, as well as psychotherapy techniques like mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), to treat psychological symptoms and pain.

Holistic Management Strategies:

Holistic management techniques can be just as effective as traditional therapies in reducing symptoms and enhancing general health. This could entail dietary adjustments, frequent exercise, stress-reduction methods, and good sleep hygiene, among other lifestyle changes. In addition, complementary therapies such as yoga, massage therapy, and acupuncture have demonstrated the potential to lower pain and improve the quality of life in people with PTSD and fibromyalgia.


There is a complicated and multifaceted link between PTSD and fibromyalgia that is typified by common symptoms, biological mechanisms, and psychosocial aspects. To develop comprehensive treatment plans that address the psychological as well as the physical components of these diseases, doctors and patients must comprehend this relationship. People with PTSD and fibromyalgia can work toward better symptom control, more resilience, and a higher quality of life by embracing a holistic approach to care.