Fibromyalgia is one of the most common chronic pain conditions. Worldwide it affects different ethnic, monetary and medical communities in the same proportion. An Israeli study comparing Bedouin women to Israeli women revealed 3.7% of the female population were affected by FM regardless of ethnicity.  In a Canadian Amish study, the Amish percentages of women with FM were virtually the same as the Canadian general population. The disorder affects an estimated 10 million people in the U.S. and an estimated 3-6% of the world population. While it is most prevalent in women —75-90 percent of the people who have FM are women —it also occurs in men and children of all ethnic groups.  Juvenile FM is gaining more attention and research in this population has escalated over the last few years. Pediatric rheumatologists treat many children with FM symptoms and it is believed that many of the juveniles seen in pediatric chronic pain clinics probably have FM either as a separate entity or as part of overlapping conditions.  Because children under the age of 18 by law can not be included in research studies, scientists are working on studies that will allow juveniles to participate.  The disorder is often seen in families, among siblings or mothers and their children. The diagnosis is usually made between the ages of 20 to 50 years, but the incidence rises with age so that by age 80, approximately 8% of adults meet the American College of Rheumatology classification of fibromyalgia.  It is imperative for older people to know that aging does not necessarily mean living with more pain. People who are in pain, regardless of their age, should be seen and treated appropriately by caring physicians.

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