Healio Rheumatology, October 2017
Efforts to better understand and treat fibromyalgia are ongoing and multifaceted, with an increased emphasis on both drug and non-drug treatments during the past 20 years. However, because of the complex, highly individualized nature of fibromyalgia causes and symptoms, the condition does not lend itself to a fast-paced drug development pipeline or to the advent of a single treatment that will help all patients.
“I think understanding and treating this condition is best achieved by finding out how the individual patient — one particular patient — got to this disease and identify any potential underlying cause,” Lan Chen, MD, PhD, rheumatologist at the University of Pennsylvania Health System, told Healio Rheumatology. “Maybe this patient has undiagnosed ankylosing spondylitis, or maybe the patient has undiagnosed [rheumatoid arthritis] RA or Sjögren’s syndrome. In some cases, stress is a trigger, if not a cause. I think an effective treatment should be an individualized targeted treatment for each patient.”