Fibromyalgia and Genetics- Is Fibromyalgia Genetic?


While it is a fact that there is no direct genetic outcomes of fibromyalgia patients- as in the disorder is not passed from parent to child the way some other genetic disorders are- there has been studies that have proven the chances of developing fibromyalgia are much higher in those who have members of the family who suffer from the disorder. This can lead to the conclusion that heredity is really a element in causing fibromyalgia.

In fact, DNA studies of members of the family of fibromyalgia and chronic pain patients have reflected several genes that could serve as a reason as to why these disorders appear to run in families. Each one of the genes found take part in your nervous system’s reaction to things- for example pressure and heat- that cause pain. Sometimes, the genes are associated with depression and anxiety too, that could be why certain antidepressant medications actually lessen the symptoms of fibromyalgia.

So, based on research, it is currently thought that fibromyalgia isn’t hereditary inside is not a mutation that is responsible for a specific trait (monogenic). However, research has proven that genes do actually predispose an individual to fibromyalgia, however in a way that is much more complex- involving a variety of genes (polygenic).

Difference between Monogenic and Polygenic

In a, or monogenic, hereditary condition, the genes that you get from your parents would be the component that determines whether you’ll get a specific disease. For example, in the case of cystic fibrosis, if each of a child’s parents are carriers of this disorder, the kid have a 25 % chance of developing the disorder, cystic fibrosis.

When you are looking at the polygenic predispositions, it’s not as easy or as certain as that. In this case, your genes only reveal that the specific disorder or illness is possible- because of the right conditions. There are other factors which will come into play to trigger a polygenic disorder.

When it comes to fibromyalgia, other factors that could trigger the disorder are: other chronic pain sources, an autoimmune disease, issues with sleep, chronic stress within an individual’s life, infectious illnesses, or even an abnormal brain chemistry. Some experts have even said that environmental factors such as sensitivities to certain foods or just being subjected to certain toxins could lead to the development of fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia and Genetic Links

In 1989, researchers began taking a look at a possible genetic element of fibromyalgia, since it does have a tendency to run in families. This study took a look at parents and siblings of people with fibromyalgia and discovered that around 52 percent of those had characteristics along with other aspects of fibromyalgia but hadn’t received and official diagnosis. Another 22 percent didn’t show the symptoms, but there is proof of some abnormal consistency in the muscles. More research conducted later on discovered and confirmed this high rate of fibromyalgia occurring through families and proved that the low threshold of pain also was common in those related to an individual suffering from fibromyalgia.

Even now, researchers are simply beginning to get a clearer picture regarding the certain genetic factors that are related to fibromyalgia. To date, there have been multiple studies that suggest the connection with a number of different genes, but most from the studies have not been repeated.

Abnormalities in genes which have been suggested by these studies include genes that are associated with the neurotransmitters and hormones that have been shown to be connected to fibromyalgia, including: norepinephrine, serotonin, glutamate, GABA, and dopamine. There are some others which are associated with the overall purpose of the brain, which inhibit viral replication, as well as the brain receptors for cannabinoids and opioids.

As more is learned regarding these genetic factors, researchers could find out which of them actually bring about an increased chance of developing fibromyalgia. In addition, researchers could find out whether or not them may be used to diagnose and/or treat fibromyalgia.

Finally, with regards to fibromyalgia research, scientists are working to locate a connection in the pain thresholds of individuals related to variations of specific genes. Variants of genes determine how efficiently the nerve cells are able to try to recycle serotonin was already established with heightened sensitivity to pain.

Is Fibromyalgia Genetic?

As you can observe, the solution to this burning real question is: it depends. Even though there know genes that do actually predispose you to developing the disorder, it’s not proportional to your genes as some other disorders are.

Scientists are staring at the field of epigenetics increasingly more when it comes to fibromyalgia. Epigenetics may be the science of how the environment- for example certain nutrients- acts on the genes to contribute to the introduction of the disease/disorder. This could help to better clear up the question of whether or not fibromyalgia is genetic.

So, while it is true that no direct genetic link has been discovered in fibromyalgia patients, there have been studies that have proven that folks who’ve family members with the disorder tend to be more likely to develop it themselves. This raises the conclusion that heredity does play a factor- even if a little one.

DNA studies done on family members of those folks who suffer from fibromyalgia and chronic pain have shown that there are several genes that could explain why chronic pain and fibromyalgia seem to run in families. It has been found that these very same genes will also be associated with depression and anxiety, that is most likely the reason why certain antidepressant medications actually reduce fibromyalgia symptoms.