Objectives To evaluate the symptom of headache as being able to clinically distinguish associated secondary fibromyalgia in patients with spondyloarthropathies (SpA). To compare the incidence of MSK complaints (related to SpA) in patients with headache to those that did not. To assess headache during the SpA disease course.
Methods Registry data from 776 patients seen in clinic with SpA were analysed with reference to headache as symptom at presentation. The data of those patients presented with headache were compared with data of those patients who did not report headache with regards to demographics and disease characteristics. In addition, other MSK complaints, fatigue and pain during disease course were also analysed.
Results From a total of 776 patients (m: f=265:508) age 48.3 ( SD +14.1), 13 were excluded as no answer was recorded. 117/ 763 patients (15.08%) representing 28 males and 89 females (23.9% vs 76.1% ratio 1:3.1) reported headache at disease onset.
During the disease course, 13 patients out of the initial 117 did not record an answer to the question and were excluded. From remaining 104 patients, 95 patients (91.3%) continued to describe headache as a symptom.
From those not reporting headache as initial symptom, (n=659) 148 did not record an answer and were excluded. From the remaining 511 patients, 194 (37.9%) reported headache during the disease course.
On the data obtained from these 2 sub-groups, comparison took place using paired sample t-test.
Table shows demographics and disease characteristics as well as differences between the 2 SpA sub-groups. Those presenting with headache describe worse disease, more fatigue and a greater percentage describe pain at pressure points and MSK system.
Conclusions Headache can clinically represent secondary FM among SpA patients. A proportion of patients (representing 15%) report headache at presentation. The majority of those patients (>90%) continue to describe headache during the disease course. From those patients who did not have headache at presentation, 38% report headache during the disease course. Patients describing headache at presentation have more MSK complaints at presentation.
Disclosure of Interest None declared