Fibromyalgia is generally characterized by generalized pain, fatigue, headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, inability to get a good night’s sleep, waking up tired and stiff and developing cognitive disorders that include lack of concentration and clumsiness, dizziness, etc.
Fibromyalgia syndrome is a chronic and long-lasting condition that has no cure. About 10 million people are currently diagnosed with this disorder. Although 9 out of 10 people diagnosed are women, men also suffer from this disorder.
Association of Fibromyalgia with other conditions
Studies have shown that fibromyalgia is also associated with several other conditions. In general, some patients with fibromyalgia also experience dryness of the cornea or eyes and mouth.
The presence of eye discomfort and dry eyes and grit is one of the most common complaints of fibromyalgia compared to oral or oral dryness. Studies have shown that there may be alteration in the formation of tears compared to the general population.
A condition of the syndrome called Sjogren’s syndrome is typically characterized by dry eyes and an inability to form tears. It has been seen, however, that patients with fibromyalgia with dry eyes and dry mouth do not meet the criteria for the diagnosis of Sjogren’s syndrome. They are commonly diagnosed with dry eye and mouth syndrome (DEMS).
Corneal sensitivity and corneal changes
A study analyzing corneal sensitivity and corneal changes in patients with fibromyalgia shows that the sensitivity is the same regardless of the age of patients with fibromyalgia. This could be due to the deterioration of the nerves and sensory systems of the eye.
Association between fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and Sjogren’s syndrome
The study also finds an association between fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and Sjogren’s syndrome.
Tear secretion decreases markedly in fibromyalgia, but not to the extent of other conditions of the dry eye. In addition, the eye becomes more sensitive to high levels of carbon dioxide, heat and cold compared to normal people.
Normal formation of tears
The normal formation of tears is controlled by the lacrimal functional unit that includes cornea, conjunctiva, accessory lacrimal glands and meibomian glands. All are connected with a fine network of nerves.
If any portion of this nervous network is affected, the production of tears may be impeded. This is something that happens in patients with fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia is closely associated with irritable bowel syndrome and the reduction of salivary secretions that lead to dry mouth. The dry mouth itself is rarely present. It is most commonly associated with dry eyes in patients with fibromyalgia.