Perceptions of Fibromyalgia Syndrome: A Survey of Southeast Asian Rheumatologists.

1: J Clin Rheumatol. 2007 Apr;13(2):59-62.

Awareness and Arshad A, Ooi KK.

From the *Rheumatic Diseases Unit, Putra Specialist Center, Alor Star, Kedah, Malaysia; and daggerDepartment of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology, Jalan Tan Tock Seng, Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Singapore, Singapore.

BACKGROUND:: Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) is a common but controversial condition. There appears to be different level of belief of its existence and awareness. We set out to explore the variations of perceptions and awareness of this condition among rheumatologists from the Southeast Asia (SEA) region. METHODS:: One hundred eight rheumatologists from the participating countries; 28 from Malaysia, 20 from Singapore, 26 from Thailand, 2 from Brunei, and 42 from Indonesia were approached to participate in this survey by answering specific questions regarding their beliefs in relation to FMS; 82% respondents from Malaysia, 100% from Singapore, 92% from Thailand, 100% from Brunei, and 90% from Indonesia completed the questionnaires. RESULTS:: Most rheumatologists (92.5%) from SEA believe that FMS is a distinct clinical entity, and also this condition is considered an illness rather than a disease. Eighty-seven percent rheumatologists from SEA believe that FMS is a mixture of medical and psychological illness, 9% believe that FMS is primarily a psychological illness, and 3% believe that it is a medical illness. Only 60% of those in a university setting include FMS in their undergraduate teaching. Eighty-five percent of the respondents ordered blood tests to exclude other serious pathologic conditions, and 100% of the respondents from SEA countries also prescribed some form of drugs to FMS patients. CONCLUSION:: FMS is apparently seen worldwide. This study confirmed that there was a variation of perceptions and knowledge of FMS among rheumatologists from SEA countries. However, most rheumatologists agreed that FMS is a distinct clinical entity with a mixture of medical and psychological factors.

PMID: 17414529 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

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About FMS Global News

Folllowing Rick Usher's death in December 2008, at his request in September of that year, I had agreed, as his principal contributor and an experienced journalist, to run the FMS Global News service due to his heavy commitments to music and raising research funds through this avenue. Following his sad and sudden death I hope to continue his work as he would have wished.
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