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An unusual pilot study has shown that insulin resistence (IR), assessed by Hgb-A1c levels, was more prevalent in fibromyalgia (FM) patients compared to non-diabetic controls and that when FM patients were given metformin, half had complete resolution of their pain.
Researchers from UTMB, studied 23 patients with Fibromyalgia and compared their A1c levels with non-diabetic patients from the Framingham and NHANES studies. They found significantly higher Hgb-A1c levels in the FM patients suggesting some greater degree of insulin resistence in FM compared with control subjects (p < 0.0001 and p = 0.0002, for the two separate control populations, respectively).
A subgroup of 16 patients with pre-diabetes or diabetes (HbA1c > 5.7% were treated with metformin. Many showed dramatic improvements of their widespread myofascial pain, with 8/16 (50%) having their numerical pain scores of 0.
These findings suggest a pathogenetic relationship between FM and IR, which may lead to a radical paradigm shift in the management of this disorder.
These results were published in PlosOne and bear repeat investigation to be considered credible.