Damp, Windy Weather Linked to Increased Fibromyalgia Pain, UK-Wide Smartphone Survey Suggests

Damp, Windy Weather Linked to Increased Fibromyalgia Pain, UK-Wide Smartphone Survey Suggests
Higher humidity, lower air pressure, and stronger winds were significantly linked with an increase in pain in people with fibromyalgia and other causes of chronic pain, but changes in temperature and rainfall were not. These are the results of a large-scale survey of people across the United Kingdom (UK) — done using Smartphone technology — with chronic pain linked to fibromyalgia, arthritis, and migraines, among other ills.  Survey results were published in Nature: Digital Medicine, in the study “How the weather affects the pain of citizen scientists using a smartphone app.” An association between weather and pain has been a long-standing issue with many people. But while some report worsening pain symptoms with higher temperatures, others report more pain with colder and wet weather. Consequently, studies have not been able to find a conclusive answer to what types of weather most affect pain. Many of these studies are small, track weather for short periods, or have not recorded the weather in an area where people live and work.  To better understand the link between weather and pain, a group of researchers at the University of Manchester designed a study — called Cloudy with a Chance of Pain — using Smartphone technology that allowed thousands of people to record their daily pain experience in real-time. The Smartphone application (app), developed by the healthcare software company uMotif, used a graphical interface with 10 categories that recorded pain severity, fatigue, morning stiffness, the impact of pain, sleep quality, time spent outside, waking up feeling tired, physical activity, mood, and overall well-being.  The levels of pain were recorded using a slider that measured along a five-option scale: no pain, mild pain, mode
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