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Cigarette Smoke and Fibromyalgia
24 Replies
Fantod - January 29

This article is from November 2010:

A new study out of Korea provides further evidence that smoking can heighten symptoms of fibromyalgia.

Researchers looked at how cigarette smoking impacted pain, fatigue, function and psychiatric features of fibromyalgia. When compared to non-smoking fibromyalgia patients, the smokers had more tender points, and female smokers were more likely to be depressed.

Researchers didn't determine why smoking was linked to depression, so the question remains: does smoking worsen depressive symptoms, or are depressed people more likely to smoke?

Previous studies have shown that tobacco use appears to heighten fibromyalgia pain, lead to fewer good days and more missed work. At least one has also linked smoking to higher rates of anxiety and depression.

It remains unclear whether kicking the habit can help improve symptoms, although it could certainly improve overall health.


January - January 30

I know this for sure. When I was around cigarette smokers, I was sick most of the time, from asthma to pneumonia. Now that I live in an area where people can't smoke in public places, and I'm not around any smokers, I don't get the respiratory infections like I used to. Second hand smoke is poison. If you want to kill yourself, fine, but you should not be allowed to smoke (commercial tobacco) around other people. I would not be surprised if it aggravated fibro.

Fantod, thanks for this post. And, I've been thinking about telling you this: It is commendable when people are committed to issues. Your commitment shows on this forum. Though I'm new here, I see that you are the one who jumps in with help when it is badly needed, even when you're tired. Just want to say I appreciate you. You know what you're talking about. Bless you.


Noca - January 30

3rd hand smoke is poison too, NO ONE should be allowed to put other's health at risk just because of their own arrogance by choosing to smoke either around other people or smoking then being around other people. I don't wanna breathe in YOUR toxic fumes just because you feel the need to get nicotine. Smoking cigarettes is a really selfish act.


Fantod - January 30

January - Thanks for your nice comments. Noca, Stacey, Toots and Axxie are all good contributors too. We make a heck of a tag team.....


toots2889 - January 31

Im sorry but i have to say what i feel, and you can do with it what you like! Im so tired of hearing about smoking, and what it does or doesnt do. Im a smoker, so according to most of you, i should be put in jail for murder or attempted murder! Please, do i tell you what you can and cant do with your life? Its nice to know that there are so many perfect people in the world! That none of you do any wrong doing in your lives, and think that because i smoke im a nuisance that should be discarded! Ive got news for you people, im sure if i spent time with you all, i could find plenty of things your guilty about. How many of you have actually done the studies or are dr.s that have all the data? How do you know that alot of this isnt bullshit like alot of other stuff has been! How many of you drink coffee, or red m&ms, and all the other crap that they said cause cancer? How many of you smoke pot? I dont, but does that make me better than you? What do the studies show about smoking pot? How many of you drink? Do i critize you for doing so? No, i dont, and i dont drink. What does alcohol do to you? Should you be doing so, with the meds your on? See people who throw stones better watch it as they may come back at them! Do i get in your face about the strong pain meds your on, compared to me! Do you drive while your on these pain meds? That kind of stuff could kill someone instantly, where what i do doesnt.Why is the country struggling with obesity? Maybe because they got people to quit smoking, but now theyve turned to food. Whats more dangerous, obesity, or smoking? What do those so called dr.s have for statistics on that? Sorry if this post seems harsh,im having a bad day, and then i come on and feel attacked. Im sorry im not perfect!


reychel - January 31

Dear toots2889,
I agree with you and with the rest of the group. I am a vegan and I do smoke ( I actually quit about a month ago ) people think that I am some type of weird creature lol
I think that they are trying to alert to something that is known: cigarettes arent good for you, etc...
At the same time, all the medication we are ALL taking could be just as dangereous if not more. The only difference is that when you take the medication the only person that is being afected bny it it you and when you lit up a cigarette whoever is around you ends up smokin too.
Trust me... I fight a battle everyday... the fact that I am a vegan scares people - for some crazy reason they always feel the need to defend eating meat, and I never try to do the same you know?? I just let them preach and I continue with my life...
All that was to tell you that people like to dont worry about it!!!!!
We are here for you :)


toots2889 - January 31

Im a smoker! Thanks for slams and tasteless way of speaking to us! If you choose not to smoke, I respect your desicion to do so. I dont force anyone to sit anywhere i am and breath in my smoke. If you dont like it, dont come by me. Theyve already taken away all of our rights regarding where we can and cant smoke anyways. How many of you are perfect? How many of you drink? How many of you have gotten behind the wheel of a car after having a drink? Even if it was only one drink, you are putting a life at risk correct? I know we are not suppose to drink while we are on the meds that we are! That could kill instantly, what i do cant. How many of you smoke pot? What does the studies say about what pot does? I know you get stoned out of your mind and it eats away your brain cells! What does pot do to the lungs when inhaled daily? Have they studied that? Have they studied what it does to people who breath it in, like second hand? Do i get on any of you for that? No, i dont because we are all different, and deal with things differently. Why do you think the country struggles with an obesity problem now? Could it be because they got people to quit smoking, for food.Which one will kill you first, obesity or smoking? Tell them to do a study on that! How many of you are on strong narcotics, and even drive while on them? Is that correct, could you kill someone? Do you think i like that idea, that your out there driving around risking others lives! You guys make it sound like we as smokers should be discarded away in jail or something for murder or attempted murder. When or if your perfect, then you have the right to beat me down for what i choose to do. If this post seems harsh, i apologize. I was having a bad day, so to come on and read this was the last thing i needed.


toots2889 - January 31

Sorry, thought i lost the first post as it wouldnt go through for it said i was having internet problems, so i tryed to redo it.


Stacey373 - January 31

okay....I guess I need to add my 2 cents into this conversation seeing as I'm one of those horrible people who smokes, cusses, and gambles! I would like to point out that I always try to respect other people and I go out of my way to not smoke around people who don't like it.

So...I'm sure smoking doesn't help our health problems. But, I know for me, I got really tired of every time I went to a doctor, trying to figure out what the hell was wrong with didn't matter what kind of pain and problems I was having....the doctors would instantly jump on the fact that I smoke and tell me THAT'S why I was in pain. If any of you are overweight, I'm sure you understand what I'm saying....I know doctors will instantly jump on the weight thing and tell you THAT is what is causing all your pain and problems.
If I went in for bronchitis or some sort of respiratory problem....then I fully admit it's because of smoking. But I just can't believe that smoking has caused all of my pain and Fibromyalgia problems.


kvc33 - February 1

I have to say that I'm surprised by the number of people on this board who smoke. Fibromyalgia certainly isn't caused by smoking (otherwise I wouldn't have it) by just being around second hand smoke makes my fatigue and ill feeling so much worse that I can not be in a room where someone has smoked for more than two minutes. I don't have anyone in my life who smokes now and I won't begin a friendship with someone who does (unless it's long distance) because it means that I can never see them. Just the smell of smoke on someone's clothes in a line at the store bothers me. I'm sorry that Toots was offended by some of the remarks along this thread and you may be offended by some of what I'm saying but that is not my intent. I, won't however, pretend that I haven't been affected by other's smoking. I'm not concerned about what your smoking is going to do to me but I am concerned about what it is going to do to the people (and their loved ones) on this board. Smoking, like any addiction is used to push down feelings that are uncomfortable. How long does it 'work'? Minutes? hours? days? before you have to smoke again? Why not find healthy ways to feel better or just let yourself have the difficult feelings? I find that I feel a lot better after I cry. I feel more peaceful and better able to cope. The temporary relief that smoking gives comes with a very high price. It may cost you your life. A woman called Barbara Tarbox died a slow painful death in her forties from smoking since she was very young. She spent the last year of her life going around to schools begging children not to ever start smoking. She was very real with them and showed them her bald head and black veins and spoke of the tremendous pain she was in. The image of her dying in a hospital bed is now being put on cigarette packages. She left behind a young daughter which is so sad. Cigarettes are a sneaky thief. The damage they do doesn't show for a long time sometimes, but if you take a look at a smoker's lungs, you will see it. If you test their physical fitness you will see shortness of breath. Even teenagers have reported not being able to participate in sports they way they used to before they started smoking. I guess I don't understand why anyone would want to do something that they know is harmful so maybe you can all tell me. What are your reasons? What do you say to yourself about smoking? Do you believe that it is harmful to yourself and others or do you think that it isn't affecting anyone? Do you think that it is okay for your children to follow your example? Let's start a dialogue about this. Your answers won't affect me because I don't smoke, but they will affect you.


Noca - February 1

Don't have to quit the drug you are addicted to, nicotine, all you have to do is quit smoking. Smoking itself doesn't provide any more pleasure than chewing a pen(if you have an oral fixation). Nicotine on the other hand is a dopaminergic drug and causes pleasure, anxiety relief and so on that all you smokers seek. Just simply wear a nicotine patch or chew nicotine laced gum, simple as that. You get your drug of choice and no one else but you is affected by what you put in or choose to do with your body.


toots2889 - February 1

kvc- I smoke because I want to. If i wanted to quit, i would. I enjoy it, and it does help me when i get upset or emotional. I did quit for about 3 months, and gained 40pds. Thats when i said enough is enough. I know what your gonna say, but i did go to the gym during this time as thats what helped me quit. I find it amazing that you feel you can comment on something you yourself have never done! The fact that you wont befriend someone who smokes, is on you. You could be passing up on some really good things, and dont even know it. I may not like the perfume that you wear everyday, does that mean i should not be friends with you? Have you seen all the programs on tv of all the obese people out there? How many people die each day from obesity, victims of drunk drivers, over doses, wheres the pictures of those people? How do people who have never smoked a day in there lives die of cancer?
Just because the dr.s have declared this to be the cause, doesnt mean there right! Its not like they havent been wrong on so many other things already. Im not saying im right, but that just because i smoke, i shouldnt be treated with disrespect either. What kind of example are you all setting for your children, by discriminating, and disrespecting,those of us that smoke. I hope i answered your questions, and i would like you to answer mine.Keep the dialogue going, so we can understand each others point of view.


toots2889 - February 1

Noca,that would be fine if i wanted to quit, but i dont want to. Like i said, I enjoy it. Im sorry that you have a problem with it, but thats on you.I would like it if you guys would answer my questions.


Noca - February 1

While I agree with all of toots concerns I would like to reply calmly to them. I just happen to be on strong narcotics, some of the strongest in the world, to deal with my life of pain that I(and many here with varying degrees) have been sentenced to. I have what most people, had they just for the first time picked up and consumed my medications, would not have. I have what is called tolerance, so what would knock a 6' 250lb man off his feet onto the floor from one Lortab or something, would not slow my heart even a beat.

I also would like to think that I have the outmost concern for not driving while impaired, had I taken a large enough dose that made me drowsy. If I'm even the least bit drowsy, I stay in at home and have a nap, or have a nap wherever I'm at. I've slept several times in my previous college's health center cause I felt I was too tired to drive, and that was not even because of my meds, that was due to good ole Fibromyalgia fatigue multiplied by the fact I couldnt sleep at all the night before. But alas like Toots said, I am not perfect. I only try my best.

Now that thats been said, I am sorry anyone was hurt in this thread by anything I said.


Noca - February 1

"How many people die each day from obesity, victims of drunk drivers, over doses, wheres the pictures of those people?"

I dont know about pictures but theres plenty of videos on youtube, many of which are tv commercials that use the same scare tactics of putting pictures of smokers on smoking packages, only in a different way. If you choose to drink and drive here, you have to go through a mandatory rehabilitation program in which you have to learn about your selfish decision, one such way is through viewing videos of crime scene photos of car crashes caused by drunken drivers. Its called "Red Asphalt" if you ever wanna look it up sometime, I couldn't handle watching it all(from video sites), it was too sickening to me.

As for overdoses, there are COUNTLESS antidrug videos and commercials that have been playing for decades on tv. Even some with really graphic content just like cigarette packages, in a series of scare tactic TV commercials called "Not even just once" from the Montana Meth project.

As for pictures of obesity, just walk outside and you'll see the results of obesity. over 2/3 of the US is overweight with 1/3 qualifying for the status of obese.


Noca - February 1

How do people who have never smoked a day in there lives die of cancer? I don't know the answer to this one but I remember seeing on tv a Canadian women who worked in a restaurant as a waitress for 30 years where smoking was allowed, died of horrible lung cancer. I don't know this person and I doubt you do either so this probably wouldn't make much of a difference for arguments sake.

My mother on the other hand, I do know. She, a healthy woman now aged 54, has had to deal with moderate to severe levels of lung problems and never smoked a day in her life. She worked for 34 years in a hospital which they used to allow their patients and staff to smoke in a non ventilated areas. That was a LONG time ago and she is just now having to deal with the effects. She has completely selfishly helped and cared for the sick and dying for the majority of her life and has to suffer this as a consequence. She now has to use 3 separate inhalers and even coritcosteriods every day, multiple times a day. Even with this, she still struggles around smoke or ANY chemical fume for that matter.


Noca - February 1

As for being friends with smokers, I would not discriminate against that, I have and have had many friends that smoke/smoked. I would just ask they not smoke in my presence nor should I have to smell their smoke. Its no different than having someone around you who reeks of bad body odor, I would ask the same from them.



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