Fibromyalgia is one of the most baffling illnesses on the
planet. Characterized by chronic fatigue and widespread soft-tissue
and muscle pain and tenderness, fibromyalgia has only been
recognized as a medical disorder since the 1980s. While the
of fibromyalgia remains unclear, scientists at Georgetown
University may have found a link between the disease and another
condition: sinusitis, an inflammation of the membranes that
line the nose and sinus cavities.
In a study published in the Archives on Internal Medicine,
researchers surveyed 297 patients age 40 or younger. While
undergoing a general medical exam, they were asked questions
about fatigue, body pain and symptoms typical of a sinus infection.
Approximately 22 percent of the patients complained of unexplained
chronic fatigue; 11 percent complained of unexplained chronic
pain; and 9 percent reported both. These patients were 10
times more likely than other patients to have symptoms associated
Sinus symptoms were more common among patients with unexplained
fatigue than fatigue caused by mental or physical illness,
suggesting a link between sinus problems and unexplained fatigue.
In addition, most of the patients who met the criteria for
chronic fatigue syndrome reported having sinus problems.
The results of this study suggest that while treating the
sinuses won't cure fibromyalgia, there's a chance it may relieve
some of the pain and fatigue associated with the condition.
Your doctor of chiropractic can advise you of the treatments
available for sinusitis, and also suggest ways to relieve
muscle pain, improve sleep quality and increase energy.
Chester AC. Symptoms of rhinosinusitis in
patients with unexplained chronic fatigue or bodily pain.
Archives of Internal Medicine, Aug. 11, 2003: Volume.
163, Number 15, pp.1832-1836.