Proprioceptive abnormalities, balance, and postural disorders have been previously reported in fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). Unlike previous research, the aim of this study was to compare the proprioception of the cervical region of patients with FMS with a healthy control group. The relationship between cervical proprioception impairment and loss of balance was also examined. A total of 96 female FMS patients and 96 female healthy control subjects were enrolled in this case-control study. The cervical joint position error test (CJPET) was administered to the patient and control groups for cervical proprioception evaluation. FMS patients were assessed with a visual analogue scale (VAS), fibromyalgia impact questionnaire (FIQ), and fatigue severity scale (FSS). Balance tests were applied to both groups. FMS patients had significantly impaired CJPET results in all directions (p < 0.001). There were significant positive correlations between FIQ scores and CJPET results (r = 0.542 and p < 0.001 for right rotation; r = 0.604 and p < 0.001 for left rotation; r = 0.550 and p < 0.001 for flexion; r = 0.612 and p < 0.001 for extension). Significant correlations were found between CJPET measurements and balance tests (for sit-to-stand test; r = 0.510 and p < 0.001 for right rotation; r = 0.431 and p < 0.001 for left rotation; r = 0.490 and p < 0.001 for flexion; r = 0.545 and p < 0.001 for extension), (for timed up and go test; r = 0.469 and p < 0.001 for right rotation; r = 0.378 and p < 0.001 for left rotation; r = 0.410 and p < 0.001 for flexion; r = 0.496 and p < 0.001 for extension) and (for one-legged balance test; r = -0.479 and p < 0.001 for right rotation; r = -0.365 and p < 0.001 for left rotation; r = -0.392 and p < 0.001 for flexion; r = -0.469 and p < 0.001 for extension). Cervical proprioception and balance were impaired in FMS patients. As the disease activity and fatigue level increased, so the deterioration in cervical proprioception became more evident. There were correlations that demonstrated an association between impaired cervical proprioception and poor balance tests. Therefore, proprioception and balance assessments should be integrated into the physical examination processes of FMS patients.
© 2022. The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature.