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Arthritis Today

Fibromyalgia and Period Problems

A connection between fibromyalgia symptoms and menstrual cycle is possible but not proven.

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Q: Can fibromyalgia be the cause of my irregular menstrual cycles?

A: Your question is one I hear often. Although a number of patients have told me they associate the development of fibromyalgia with the beginning of irregular menstrual periods, research thus far has not proven a connection between the two. 

Nevertheless, I wouldn’t be surprised if such a connection is eventually found. It is well known that most chronic illnesses can cause irregular menses. The portions of the nervous system that control menstruation are very sensitive to any slight changes in the body, such as those that occur with conditions like fibromyalgia.

Daniel Clauw, MD
Rheumatologist

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