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Rheumatology (Oxford). 2013 Feb;52(2):311-20. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/kes255. Epub 2012 Sep 28.

Effect of fibromyalgia syndrome on the health-related quality of life and economic burden in Korea.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Arthritis & Autoimmunity Research Center, Catholic University of Daegu School of Medicine, Daegu, Republic of Korea.



To investigate the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) and economic burden of patients with FM syndrome (FMS) and compare the changes in these parameters 3 months before and after FMS diagnosis.


A total of 2098 patients with FMS (1818 previously diagnosed with FMS and 280 newly diagnosed with FMS) were enrolled in this study. The newly diagnosed patients with FMS participated in a 3-month prospective observational study to assess HRQOL and economic burden in terms of direct health-care costs, direct non-health-care costs and indirect costs. HRQOL was estimated using the Short Form 36 Health Survey.


Mean (S.D.) scores obtained on the physical component summary (PCS) and mental component summary (MCS) scales by patients with FMS were 34.01 (7.28) and 37.29 (11.17), respectively. The total expenditure for the 3 months before enrolment was $1481 (S.D. $2206). Indirect costs [$1126 (S.D. $2016)] were about three times higher than direct costs [$355 (S.D. $534)]. The PCS and MCS scores increased to 4.03 (S.D. 6.79) and 4.06 (S.D. 10.57), respectively, 3 months after the initial FMS diagnosis (P < 0.001, both). Total expenditure after FMS diagnosis was reduced by $1025 (S.D. $1347) as compared with costs before FMS diagnosis (P < 0.001). Conclusion. Patients with FMS experience a decline in their HRQOL and constitute a significant economic burden on health-service utilization. The improvement in health-related costs and HRQOL after a diagnosis of FMS demonstrates a need for early diagnosis and treatment of FMS to reduce costs and enhance HRQOL.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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