The Role of Complementary and Alternative Medicine Treatments in Fibromyalgia: a Comprehensive Review

  • Amit Prabhakar
  • Jennifer M. Kaiser
  • Matthew B. Novitch
  • Elyse M. CornettEmail author
  • Richard D. Urman
  • Alan D. Kaye
Complementary & Alternative Medicine (S Kolasinski, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Complementary and Alternative Medicine


Purpose of Review

Fibromyalgia is a complex chronic pain syndrome that can have debilitating consequences for affected patients. When compared to the general population, patients with fibromyalgia experience lowered mechanical and thermal pain thresholds, altered temporal summation of painful stimuli, and higher than normal pain ratings for known noxious stimuli.

Recent Findings

There is no definitive cure for fibromyalgia and treatment primarily focuses on both symptom management and improving patient quality of life. This treatment strategy involves a comprehensive multidisciplinary approach consisting of lifestyle modifications, pharmacologic measures, and other complementary approaches including but not limited to acupuncture, yoga, tai chi, and meditation.


This manuscript will discuss the diagnosis and treatment of fibromyalgia, as well as complementary and alternative therapies that should be considered by healthcare providers.


Fibromyalgia Fibromyalgia treatments Complementary therapy Alternative therapy Pain Symptom management 


Compliance with Ethics Guidelines

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Amit Prabhakar
    • 1
  • Jennifer M. Kaiser
    • 2
  • Matthew B. Novitch
    • 2
  • Elyse M. Cornett
    • 3
    Email author
  • Richard D. Urman
    • 4
  • Alan D. Kaye
    • 5
  1. 1.Department of Anesthesiology, Division of Critical CareEmory University School of MedicineAtlantaUSA
  2. 2.Medical College of WisconsinWausauUSA
  3. 3.Department of AnesthesiologyLSU Health ShreveportShreveportUSA
  4. 4.Department of Anesthesiology, Perioperative and Pain MedicineHarvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s HospitalBostonUSA
  5. 5.Department of AnesthesiologyLSU Health Sciences CenterNew OrleansUSA

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