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Improvement in Fibromyalgia Pain Scale Quantified

Two-point improvement on Brief Pain Inventory implies meaningful pain reduction

TUESDAY, March 8 (HealthDay News) -- A two-point improvement on the Brief Pain Inventory (BPI) represents the minimum clinically important difference (MCID) for patients with fibromyalgia pain, corresponding to a 30 to 35 percent improvement from baseline, according to a study published online Feb. 10 in Arthritis Care & Research.

Philip J. Mease, M.D., of the University of Washington School of Medicine in Seattle, and colleagues used data from four studies evaluating duloxetine as a treatment for fibromyalgia. They estimated the MCID for the BPI average pain item score and the BPI severity score by anchoring them against the Patient Global Impression of Improvement scale.

The researchers determined that an approximately two-point improvement on both the BPI average pain item and severity scores represented the MCID. These MCIDs corresponded to a 30 to 35 percent improvement in baseline pain in both scores.

"These findings may be beneficial for use in designing clinical trials in which the BPI is used to evaluate improvements in pain severity," the authors write.

The study received financial support from Eli Lilly and Company and Boehringer Ingelheim GmbH.

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