A pilot study of the effects of behavioral weight loss treatment on fibromyalgia symptoms

J Psychosom Res. 2005 Nov;59(5):275-82. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2005.06.081.


Objective: Previous studies have found a relation between weight loss and pain severity in various chronic pain populations. However, there has been little research examining the relation between body mass index (BMI) and fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). The purpose of this pilot study was to investigate the relationship between BMI and FMS symptoms and to determine if FMS symptoms would decrease following weight loss.

Methods: Overweight and obese women participated in a 20-week behavioral weight loss treatment.

Results: Participants, on average, lost 9.2 lbs (4.4% of their initial weight), and there were significant pre-postimprovements on several outcome measures. Although weight was not significantly related to pain at baseline, weight loss significantly predicted a reduction in FMS, pain interference, body satisfaction, and quality of life (QOL).

Conclusion: Findings suggest that behavioral weight loss treatment could be included in the treatment for overweight/obese women with FMS.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Behavior Therapy
  • Body Image
  • Body Mass Index
  • Female
  • Fibromyalgia / complications*
  • Fibromyalgia / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity
  • Pain / etiology*
  • Pain Management
  • Pain Measurement
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Quality of Life
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Weight Loss*