European Network of Fibromyalgia Associations

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International Fibromyalgia Awareness Day 2020

May 12th is International Fibromyalgia Awareness Day, which derives from the May 12th International Awareness Day. May 12th has been designated as International Awareness Day for Chronic Immunological and Neurological Diseases (CIND) since 1992. The CIND illnesses include Fibromyalgia, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS), Gulf War Syndrome (GWS) and Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS).


Mateja Kržan elected to the EPF Ethics Committee

ENFA Board Member Mateja Kržan was recently elected to the newly formed European Patients’ Forum (EPF) Ethics Committee, during the EPF 2020 Virtual Annual General Meeting. Mateja joins Amanda Bok (European Haemophilia Consortium), Anita Arsovska (Stroke Alliance for Europe), Birgit Dembski (BAG SELBSTHILFE) and Stella de Sabata (International Diabetes Federation Europe) as the five elected members of the committee…



Fibromyalgia is common and an enormous clinical burden for both patients and society. It is a very complex disease with a variety of symptoms in addition to the defining symptom – chronic widespread pain. These include fatigue, non-restorative sleep, morning stiffness, irritable bowel and bladder, restless legs, depression, anxiety and cognitive dysfunction often referred to as “fibro fog”. All of these symptoms cause serious limitations in patients’ ability to perform ordinary daily chores and work and severely affect their quality of life. The burden on healthcare and society is high. Research in the UK has shown that diagnosis and positive management of fibromyalgia reduces healthcare cost by avoiding unnecessary investigations and consultations. Yet a recent global survey showed that healthcare professionals lack confidence in diagnosing and managing fibromyalgia. The average time from development of symptoms to diagnosis is over 2 years with unnecessary medical referrals and investigations. Educating the public, patients and healthcare professional to promote better recognising and management of fibromyalgia will benefit patient, healthcare providers and society.

Professor Ernest Choy
Head of Rheumatology and Translational Research
School of Medicine, Cardiff University


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