University Of Tasmania
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Determining the association between fibromyalgia, the gut microbiome and its biomarkers: A systematic review

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-20, 15:33 authored by Erdrich, S, Jason Hawrelak, Myers, SP, Harnett, JE

Background: The association between fibromyalgia and irritable bowel syndrome is well-established. Alterations in the composition and diversity of the gut microbiome in irritable bowel syndrome have been reported, however, this association is poorly understood in fibromyalgia. Our aim was to summarise the research reporting on the gastrointestinal microbiome and its biomarkers in people with fibromyalgia.

Methods: A systematic review of published original research reporting on the gastrointestinal microbiota and its biomarkers in adults with a diagnosis of fibromyalgia was undertaken.

Results: From 4771 studies, 11 met our inclusion criteria and were separated into four main groups: papers reporting Helicobacter pylori; other gut bacterial markers; metabolomics and other biomarkers, which included intestinal permeability and small intestinal bacterial overgrowth.

Conclusion: The results suggest there is a paucity of quality research in this area, with indications that the gut microbiota may play a role in fibromyalgia within the emerging field of the gut-musculoskeletal axis. Further investigations into the relationship between the gut microbiota, gut dysfunction and fibromyalgia are warranted.


Publication title

BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders



Article number









School of Pharmacy and Pharmacology


Biomed Central Ltd

Place of publication

Middlesex House, 34-42 Cleveland St, London, England, W1T 4Lb

Rights statement

Copyright 2020 The Authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)

Repository Status

  • Open

Socio-economic Objectives

Clinical health not elsewhere classified