The medical causes of fibromyalgia remain a mystery. Individuals who experience the debilitating fatigue and terrible muscle pain of fibromyalgia commonly claim that it is exacerbated by changes in the weather.
Many of these sufferers claim that cold and damp days are routinely correlated with symptom flareups.
A National Fibromyalgia Association study found that individuals with fibromyalgia ranked these weather changes as a leading cause of their pain and stiffness. While the connection between arthritis and temperature changes has mostly been disapproved, the relationship between fibromyalgia symptoms and weather has not been thoroughly vetted. The few research studies that have examined this correlation found very little evidence.
One of the more recent attempts to investigate this connection appeared in the Arthritis Care and Research Journal. The study focused on 333 women of middle-age who suffer from fibromyalgia and examined the connection between environmental factors and their reported levels of fatigue and pain. Researchers tracked humidity levels, precipitation, temperature, sunshine, atmospheric pressure as reported by a meteorological institute.
The research was that in some minor cases they did find the changes in the weather had a small but significant effect on fatigue and pain symptoms. Overall, however, they sound that there was “more evidence against than in support of a uniform influence of weather on daily pain and fatigue.”
Research studies may not have found a connection between weather change and fibromyalgia flare ups, but many people who suffer from this chronic pain disorder continue to believe that there is a profound connection between the weather and their experience of this disorder.