Brain Imaging Study Sheds Light on Fibromyalgia July 11, 2009 5:40 PM
Brain Imaging Study Sheds Light on
Fibromyalgia Link found between gray matter and
dopamine levels in patients
(HealthDay News) -- Changes in the levels of the neurotransmitter
dopamine may explain brain gray matter reductions experienced by patients with
fibromyalgia, a new study suggests.
Previous research found an
association between fibromyalgia and reductions in gray matter, but the cause
wasn't known, the researchers wrote.
In this new study, Dr. Patrick B.
Wood, of Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center-Shreveport, and
colleagues used MRI to compare the brains of 30 women with fibromyalgia and 20
healthy women of the same age. Significant reductions in gray matter were found
in the fibromyalgia patients, confirming previous findings.
study, published in the June issue of the Journal of Pain, also found
that fibromyalgia patients showed a strong correlation of dopamine metabolism
levels and gray matter density in areas of the brain where dopamine is known to
control neurological activity.
This association between dopamine levels
and gray matter density offer new information about a possible mechanism behind
some of the brain abnormalities seen in fibromyalgia patients, the researchers