Currently there are no routine blood tests to diagnose fibromyalgia. However, studies are showing promise. Genetic markers have been found, and though still in the research stage, I suspect we will have a blood test for biological markers before long.
As reported in Fibromyalgia Network News, a new study by Dr. Alan Light (Light, et al. 2011) at the University of Utah, shows FM patients have an increased number of certain sensory receptors and three biomarkers are elevated in the FM patient compared to otherwise healthy study participants and those participants with MS and depression. This is a very important finding specific to FM.
Several comorbid conditions to fibromyalgia (meaning they occur more frequent in FM) do have blood or other tests, such as, hypothyroidism, interstitial cystitis and other bladder problems, gastrointestinal dysfunction, and Raynaud’s. Many Lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and sjögren’s patients also have FM, and metabolic disorders seem to have a connection to the development of secondary fibromyalgia. There are blood tests that should be done when FM is suspected to make sure these other conditions are not present. They are all treated specifically and the medications used to treat the centralization of FM will not treat these other conditions successfully.
It is important to support the research if you are able. The American Fibromyalgia Syndrome Association, AFSA, has contributed to some very important studies that have helped us understand biomarkers and the presence of myofascial trigger points in FM.
Harmony and Hope, Celeste
This blog is based on my original answer as fibromyalgia expert at ShareCare, “How are blood tests used to treat fibromyalgia?” View my other answered questions as fibromyalgia expertCitation:
Light, AR, Bateman L, Jo D, Hughen RW, Vanhaitsma TA, White AT, Light KC. Gene expression alterations at baseline and following moderate exercise in patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and
Fibromyalgia Syndrome. J Intern Med [epub ahead of print], May 26, 2011
All blogs, posts and answers are based on the work in Integrative Therapies for Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and Myofascial Pain: The Mind-Body Connection by Celeste Cooper, RN, and Jeff Miller, PhD. 2010, Vermont: Healing Arts press