Statistics: How Many People Have FMS
According to the American Chronic Pain Society, fibromyalgia syndrome is one of the most common chronic pain conditions in the world. The main symptoms of fibromyalgia syndrome are pain and tenderness across the body, with severe tiredness and problems with sleep – around 90% of the people with fibromyalgia syndrome will have problems with sleep. Because the symptoms of fibromyalgia syndrome are very varied and fibromyalgia syndrome can be quite difficult to diagnose, the statistics for people with the disorder can vary quite widely, and the figures can often be based on estimates rather than actual numbers.
How Many People Worldwide Have Fibromyalgia Syndrome?According to the National Fibromyalgia Association, 3-6% of the world’s population has fibromyalgia syndrome. With a projected world population of 6,816,322,780 in April 2010 (based on the US Census Bureau’s US and World Population Clocks), this estimate would mean that somewhere around 200 million to 400 million people worldwide have fibromyalgia syndrome.
How Do Fibromyalgia Syndrome Numbers Vary Around the World?Most of the numbers available for fibromyalgia syndrome are from the USA, but these still vary quite widely, and range from 3 to 10 million. The National Fibromyalgia Association suggests that as many as 10 million people in the USA have fibromyalgia syndrome. The National Pain Foundation states that about 2% of the US population has fibromyalgia syndrome, which would be around 6 million people. The American College of Rheumatology reports that around 3 to 6 million people in the USA have fibromyalgia syndrome, and the NWHIC (National Women's Health Information Centre – part of the US Department of Health and Human Services) suggests that the figures could be as high as 8 million.
NIAMS (the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, one of the US National Institutes of Health) estimates that 3.7 million people in the USA have fibromyalgia syndrome. This would be a prevalence (the number of people in the population with the disease) of about 1 in 73 people.
Based on this prevalence, around 800,000 people in the UK would have fibromyalgia syndrome (but bear in mind that this is just an estimate, and is based on the prevalence in the USA – it may be different in the UK).
The NHS estimates that 2-4.5% of people in the UK may have fibromyalgia syndrome – based on a UK population of 61,414,062 (figures from 2008 from the World Bank), this would mean that between 1.2 million and 2.8 million people in the UK would have fibromyalgia syndrome.