INTRODUCTION: Cutaneous silent period (CSP) is an inhibitory spinal protective reflex and its afferents consist of A-delta nerve fibers. We aimed to evaluate patients with fibromyalgia (FM) and healthy controls to determine any differences between the groups in terms of CSP duration and latency, and if present, to determine whether there is any relationship with disease characteristics, psychological disorders and quality of life. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Thirty-two patients with FM and 32 healthy volunteers were included in the study. The patient and control groups were compared in terms of CSP latency and duration in both upper and lower extremities. Disease characteristics, psychological disorders and quality of life of patients were assessed using the Fibromyalgia Impact Questionnaire (FIQ) and Short Form-36 (SF-36). Patients with CSP measurements equal to or lower than those of the control group were compared with those with higher values than controls in terms of disease characteristics, psychological status and quality of life. RESULTS: Significantly prolonged CSP latencies in both upper and lower extremities were determined in patients compared to controls. We found that prolongation of CSP latency in the lower extremity is associated with disease severity and functional disability. CONCLUSIONS: CSP latencies in both upper and lower extremities in patients with FM are longer than in healthy volunteers. Moreover, prolongation of CSP latency in the lower extremity is associated with disease severity and physical functional disability.
Fibromyalgia; Cutaneous silent period; Disability