Can Fibromyalgia And Copd Be Connected


Asked by christine

Can Fibromyalgia And Copd Be Connected


Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) is linked to chronic pain, not necessarily fibromyalgia, in three ways. First, COPD, as a pulmonary disease, leads to poor oxygenation of the tissues in the body. Without oxygen, nerves and muscles do not function well. In the same way poor circulation leads to muscle and nerve pain (vascular caudication), low levels of oxygen also leads to muscle and nerve pain. Increased oxygen supplementation may help this type of pain.

Second, those who have COPD often use steroids. Sterioids cause muscle damage (Sterioid Myopathy). This condition causes pain that is very similar to the pain of fibromyalgia. Thus, often steroid myopathy is often misidentified as fibromyalgia. This type of pain is also commonly seen in those with cancer who also take steroids. The treatment for pain related to steriod myopathy is anti-inflammatory medications (not opioids).

Furthermore, what normally leads to COPD is smoking. And smoking is very much related to chronic pain. Quit smoking now.

Although COPD is not directly linked to fibromyalgia; COPD is directly linked to pain in more ways than one.

Dr. Christina Lasich, MD

Answered by Christina Lasich, MD