Comparison of the cortisol awakening response inwomen with shoulder and neck pain and women with fibromyalgia
2012 (English)In: Psychoneuroendocrinology, ISSN 0306-4530, E-ISSN 1873-3360, Vol. 37, no 2, 299-306 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Shoulder and neck pain (SNP) and fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS), two musculoskeletal conditions of unknown pathogenesis, share some common features in terms of altered neuroendocrine responses, pain and stress perception. However, the pain distribution in SNP is localized,whereas in FMS is more widespread. Because regional musculoskeletal pain may represent an intermediate stage along a continuum towards widespread musculoskeletal pain we compared the cortisol awakening response (CAR) in women with SNP with the CAR in FMS patients and healthy controls (HC) in a controlled hospital—hotel setting. The aim of the study was to investigate whether SNP is related to a deviant regulation of the hypothalamic—pituitary—adrenal (HPA) axis. Eighteen women with SNP, 29 female FMS patients, and 27 female HC participated in the study. Cortisol samples were collected upon awakening, 30 and 60 min later. Questionnaires measuring pain levels, sleeping problems, perceived stress, and psychological characteristics were administered to the participants. Compared with HC, women with SNP had a tendency towards higher cortisol levels, whereas FMS had lower cortisol levels. Adjustment for potential confounders did not influence the results. Women with SNP and FMS patients reported more health complaints, pain, and perceived stress than the HC, but women with SNP were less affected than the FMS patients. Women with SNP showed a tendency towards an elevated HPA axis activity compared with HC. The current findings may indicate that the hypercortisolism in regional musculoskeletal pain represent an intermediate stage towards the development of a hypocortisolism in widespread musculoskeletal pain.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2012. Vol. 37, no 2, 299-306 p.
salivary cortisol, hypothalamic—pituitary—adrenal axis, regional musculoskeletal pain, widespread musculoskeletal pain, stress, fibromyalgia syndrome, cortisol awakening response
Research subject Psychology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-65009DOI: 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2011.06.014ISI: 000299979800014OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-65009DiVA: diva2:460491
FunderSwedish Research CouncilFAS, Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research
This research was supported by grants to Professor Ulf Lundberg from the Swedish Research Council and the Swedish Council for Working Life and Social Research. This study was also supported by the Centre for Musculoskeletal Research at the University of Gävle. Thanks to Associate Professor Petra Lindfors for her comments on the preliminary manuscript, Professor Magne Rø, MD, and Dr Tonje Okkenhaug Johansen, MD, for performing the clinical examinations on the participants, Mrs Ann-Christine Sjöbeck for performing the cortisol assays, and to Mr Håvard Wuttudal Lorås for assisting during data collection.2011-11-302011-11-302012-05-31Bibliographically approved