The Link Between Chronic Pain and Obesity

The Link Between Chronic Pain and Obesity
Researchers at the University of Utah recently published a study entitled “The association between chronic pain and obesity” reviewing the link between these two conditions. The review appeared in the Journal of Pain Research. Both obesity and pain are considered serious public health concerns that can affect overall quality of life. A correlation between obesity and pain has been reported with pain complaints common among obese individuals and comorbid obesity known to be a common feature in chronic pain conditions. Obesity causes a systemic inflammatory state in the body and is associated with several chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, hypertension and cancer. The population in the United States is estimated to exceed by far the world average in terms of obesity rate. In this study, the authors reviewed the link between obesity and pain in the general population and also in patients suffering from chronic pain, along with the possible mechanisms behind this association. Obesity has been reported to be involved in several pain diagnoses including fibromyalgia, a medical disorder characterized by widespread chronic musculoskeletal pain; in addition, fibromyalgia is also linked to incapacitating fatigue, stiffness and numbness in certain parts of the body, painful response to pressure, headaches, unrefreshing sleep (poor sleep quality), anxiety or depression and
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