Researchers followed a group of nearly 8,200 fibromyalgia patients and more than 10,000 osteoarthritis patients for 35 years. They say the death rate was nearly the same between these two groups.
Earlier research has also shown the higher rate of suicide. Given the high rate of depression, strain on marriage and other relationships, and the difficulties of treating fibromyalgia, that's sadly to be expected.
The higher rate of accidental death may seem odd, but it does make sense in light of certain fibromyalgia symptoms. We tend to be clumsy, and our cognitive dysfunction (fibro fog) may make it dangerous for us to drive. Also, accidental overdose can happen due to forgetfulness, desperation or both.
The take-aways from this study include:
- We don't need to worry about early death as a result of fibromyalgia (at least, not directly);
- We do need to find help for depression and suicidal thoughts;
- We need to be careful and pay attention to our physical and mental capabilities at that moment so we don't put ourselves in danger.
If you start to think about suicide, help is available. Call this number:
It's a VA hotline, but anyone is welcome to call. The staffing and training there are better than at many local agencies, so you'll talk to someone who can really help you.
If you think you may be depressed, it's important to talk to your doctor about potential treatments. Here's an article that can help you identify depression and learn what treatments are available:
Have you had accidents and injuries as a result of fibromyalgia? Have you stopped driving or doing other things that you feel have become too dangerous? What has helped you deal with depression? Leave your comments below!
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