Pain in systemic connective tissue diseases

Manuela Di Franco, Laura Bazzichi, Roberto Casale, Piercarlo Sarzi-Puttini, Fabiola Atzeni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Abstract Pain is frequent in patients with connective tissue diseases (CTDs), particularly those affected by systemic sclerosis (SSc) and systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) in which it is virtually ubiquitous and can have different causes. The SLE classification criteria include pain associated with musculoskeletal involvement, which are frequently the initial symptom of SLE and can include arthralgia, arthritis and/or myalgia. Chronic widespread pain, the cornerstone of fibromyalgia (FM), is also frequently associated with CTDs. Chronic pain has a considerable impact on mental health, and the professional and family lives of patients. It can be due to many disorders, but there are few reports concerning its prevalence during the course of other diseases. It is essential to identify the origin of pain in CTDs in order to avoid dangerous over-treatment in patients with co-existing widespread pain. Effective pain management is a primary goal of patient care, although it has not been investigated in detail in patients with SSc.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1154
Pages (from-to)53-62
Number of pages10
JournalBest Practice and Research: Clinical Rheumatology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Feb 1 2015


  • Chronic pain
  • Connective tissue diseases
  • Inflammatory pain
  • SLE
  • SSc

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology


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