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Clin Rheumatol. 1991 Jun;10(2):168-73.

Comparisons of spontaneous pain and tenderness in patients with primary fibromyalgia.

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  • 1University Rheumatology Clinic, Basle, Switzerland.


Pain was assessed in 47 patients with fibromyalgia in the University Rheumatology Clinic in Basle with the aid of three different techniques. First, a simple visual analog scale was used, later a body diagram on which patients could indicate pain separately in different regions of the body (pain score) and, finally, dolorimetric measurements at 56 typical PFS tender points. After four weeks of therapy, pain was again scored by patients using these techniques. The changes in assessment were compared with the aid of Spearman correlation. Data recorded with the aid of the body diagram correlated better with dolorimetric findings than did the results obtained from a simple visual analog scale. The severity of the disease can be more objectively assessed using these three techniques than it can using only the visual analog scale. In particular, the pain score and dolorimetry make possible a clear assessment of the value of therapeutic regimens.

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