Background Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) as a chronic pain condition can cause impaired physical activity level of the patients.
Objectives The purpose this case-control study was to evaluate the physical activity levels of patients with FMS and to assess a possible relation between physical activity and disease characteristics.
Methods Seventy patients with FMS and 50 age-gender matched controls were included in the study. The demographic features and duration of symptoms of the participants were recorded. The level of pain was evaluated using the visual analogue scale (VAS). The Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ) scoring system was used for the evaluation of the impact of FMS. Also for assessing the physical activity in our participants, we used The International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ). Mann–Whitney U and Pearson correlation tests were used for group comparisons and was used for correlation analyses.
Results The mean age of the patients and healthy controls were 41,90±8,53 years and 41,52±9,01 years, respectively. Symptom duration of the patients was 61,0±45,8 months. The patients with FMS presented significantly less transportation-related, recreational and total physical activity levels, besides reporting significantly less time spent walking and less time spent in vigorous activities than healthy controls (p<0,05). Also, in patients with FMS, there was a negative correlation between pain and the scores of self-reported moderate or vigorous physical activity (r =- 0.41, p<0.01). However, we couldn't find any correlation between FIQ and IPAQ scores.
Conclusions Patients with FMS are physically less active than healthy individuals of similar profile. This reduced activity seems to be associated with pain, but not with the impact of the disorder. In the approach to the patient with FMS, considering the patient's physical activity behavior can contribute to the management of the disorder. In future studies assessing the effect of exercise in FMS, consideration of the patients' physical activity level may contribute to a complete evaluation of the patients.
Disclosure of Interest None declared