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Tension Myalgia as a Diagnosis at the Mayo Clinic and Its Relationship to Fibrositis, Fibromyalgia, and Myofascial Pain Syndrome

      Tension myalgia is a diagnosis that has been in use at the Mayo Clinic for more than 40 years. The term describes a common muscle pain disorder that is conceptually similar to other muscle pain disorders such as fibrositis, fibromyalgia, and myofascial pain syndrome. This article outlines the history of these disorders and proposes “tension myalgia” as a term that unifies these separate diagnoses under one conceptual framework. Recause the diagnostic criteria for tension myalgia have been vague, the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the Mayo Clinic has developed specific criteria for generalized, regional, and localized forms of this disorder. The recommended treatment approach includes reassurance, elimination of contributing factors, physical therapy to restore normal neuromuscular function, conditioning, and medications.
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