Session Type: Abstract Submissions (ACR)
Background/Purpose: In dangerous environments, hypervigilance conveys a survival value. A cave dweller who sleeps lightly and startles easily might escape a prowling bear while he is peacefully slumbering neighbor becomes a midnight snack. In safer environments, hypervigilance may cause dysfunctional stress. Some fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) patients report symptoms of hypervigilance. We compared FMS and RA patients with respect to hypervigilance symptoms, and FMS patients with and without each hypervigilance symptom with respect to environmental stress.
Methods: 211 office patients with either FMS (150; 130 women and 20 men; mean age 51±12) or RA (61; 45 women and 16 men; mean age 55±15) completed a questionnaire about hypervigilance symptoms (present or absent) and the effect of various environmental conditions on their pain (rated as 1 = no effect, 2 = mildly worse, 3 = moderately worse, and 4 = severely worse). The chi-square test of association was done to compare FMS and RA patients with respect to percentages.
Results: Compared to RA patients, significantly higher percentages of FMS patients woke up more than once during the night (84% vs. 71%, p = 0.033), had trouble getting to sleep (63% vs. 38%, p = 0.001), and startled easily (53% vs. 30%, p = 0.003). FMS patients were uncomfortable in crowds (median 2.3 vs. 1.8, p < 0.001), FMS patients were made uncomfortable by people standing behind them (median 2.4 vs. 1.9, p < 0.001), FMS patients startled easily (median 2.1 vs. 1.9, p = 0.004), FMS patients did not feel at ease with strangers (median 2.2 vs. 1.9, p = 0.029), and FMS patients did not find it easy to trust strangers (median 2.3 vs. 1.9, p = 0.009).
Conclusion: FMS patients were significantly more likely to report hypervigilance symptoms compared to RA patients. The hypervigilance trait may be present in many fibromyalgia patients and could explain their hyper sensitivity traits to perceived environmental threats
R. S. Katz,
« Back to 2014 ACR/ARHP Annual Meeting
ACR Meeting Abstracts - https://acrabstracts.org/abstract/hypervigilance-and-fms/