Questionnaire May Reliably Identify Fibromyalgia in Patients With Chronic Daily Headache

The Fibromyalgia Rapid Screening Tool may be reliable for detecting fibromyalgia in patients with chronic daily headache.

The Fibromyalgia Rapid Screening Tool (FiRST), a self-administered questionnaire, may be reliable for detecting fibromyalgia in patients with chronic daily headache, according to a study published in Pain Medicine.

A total of 171 consecutive patients receiving an initial examination for primary chronic daily headache (≥15 days/month for ≥3 months) at a neurology outpatient clinic were enrolled. Patients were asked to fill out the Korean version of the FiRST questionnaire in an effort to evaluate the validity and reliability of this tool for diagnosing fibromyalgia, which was defined according to the 2010 criteria from the American College of Rheumatology. Anxiety/depression and insomnia were also assessed using the 14-item Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale and the Insomnia Severity Index, respectively.

Study participants with (n=100; 58.4%) vs without fibromyalgia were found to have higher total FiRST scores (4.8±1.3 vs 2.8±1.5, respectively; P <.001). According to a receiver operating characteristic curve analysis, a cutoff score of 5, which translated to scoring positive on ≥5 of 6 items, was associated with the highest rate for correctly identifying fibromyalgia (77.2%), with a sensitivity and specificity of 70.0% and 87.3%, respectively, and a positive predictive value of 88.6% and negative predictive value of 67.4%.

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Study limitations include the study’s observational nature and the small number of participants.

”[T]he FiRST questionnaire is beneficial in differentiating fibromyalgia among participants with chronic daily headache in daily practice and epidemiological studies,” concluded the study authors.

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Cho S-J, Perrot S, Sohn J-H, Bae JS, Chu MK. Validity and reliability of the fibromyalgia rapid screening tool among individuals with chronic daily headache: a clinic-based study [published online December 19, 2018]. Pain Med. doi: 10.1093/pm/pny216

This article originally appeared on Clinical Pain Advisor