SPECT Scans for Brain Blood Flow Abnormal In Fibromyalgia

Published: July 22, 2012

Fibromyalgia may not be all in our minds — but it is partly in our brains. Here is one more study showing alterations in brain blood flow on SPECT scanning in Fibromyalgia — again showing that those who say this is not a real disease are, well, out of their minds. ;-)

This study used SPECT scanning to look at blood flow in different areas of the brain in 20 patients with fibromyalgia vs. 10 healthy women. Fibromyalgia patients showed decreased blood flow in specific areas of the brain, and the severity of these blood flow abnormalities correlated with the clinical severity of their disease.

These findings are similar to what Dr. Jay Goldstein and others had found in earlier studies. Interestingly, they found that the therapies that improved symptoms usually actually further decreased blood flow to these areas — suggesting that the decreased blood flow is an attempt by your body to adapt to the illness, and not the cause of the illness.


Eric Guedj, Serge Cammilleri, Jean Niboyet, Patricia Dupont, Eric Vidal, Jean-Pierre Dropinski and Olivier Mundler. Clinical Correlate of Brain SPECT Perfusion Abnormalities in Fibromyalgia. Journal of Nuclear Medicine Vol. 49 No. 11 1798-1803. First published online October 16, 2008, 10.2967/jnumed.108.053264.

Jacob Teitelbaum, MD

is one of the world's leading integrative medical authorities on fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. He is the lead author of eight research studies on their effective treatments, and has published numerous health & wellness books, including the bestseller on fibromyalgia From Fatigued to Fantastic! and The Fatigue and Fibromyalgia Solution. Dr. Teitelbaum is one of the most frequently quoted fibromyalgia experts in the world and appears often as a guest on news and talk shows nationwide including Good Morning America, The Dr. Oz Show, Oprah & Friends, CNN, and Fox News Health.

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