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Fibromyalgia and Dermatology

Fibromyalgia is a chronic disorder commonly known to cause musculoskeletal pain,fatigue, digestion issues and sleep disorders.It is however important to know that as many as 80 percent of individuals diagnosed with this condition develop skin problems.
Skin issues could range from excessive dry skin ,soreness, mottled pigmentation to tingling, numbness and allodynia(heightened sensitivity to touch). Even though these are not major health threats,they can be very distressing and adversely affect the quality of life and besides, worsen pre-existing fibromyalgia symptoms.

Over the last few years research has shown that there are various changes in the deeper skin including the small blood vessels which explains skin problems in fibromyalgia. Also, it has been documented that there is dysfunction at the mitochondria level in the cell (where energy is produced).

The typical rash associated with the fibromyalgia syndrome is red and can be flat or raised and scaly. In some cases there is also itchiness, soreness or a crawling sensation on the skin.

Generally,in this condition the skin gets more sensitive and bruises easily.The skin could look patchy and mottled .These mottled areas of skin can occur at any location on the body but are common on the inside of the arms and thighs.
Dry skin is another common complaint (which further aggravates the rash and itching).Patients may suffer with chronically dry and cracked skin in various areas of the body. Hands especially fingers seem to be particularly affected and symptoms can become so severe that skin begins to peel and can become very painful.And also these areas become susceptible to secondary bacterial and fungal infections.
Skin wounds tend to heal slower. Numbness, tingling or burning sensation and hypersensitivity to touch and pressure are also common.

Excessive sweating is also more common in these patients.This is due to autonomic dysfunction within the hypothalamus, the area in the brain that controls sleep and regulates sweating, bowel movements and other body functions.