Chronic pain is highly prevalent in older adults, and until recently, was considered to be
common but relatively “benign.” Mounting evidence, however, suggests that some of the 116 million
US adults who suffer from chronic pain are also at an increased risk for developing age-related diseases
prematurely, suffering earlier cognitive and physical decline, and experiencing earlier mortality.
Given the aging US population and the prevalence of chronic pain along with related healthcare consequences,
there is a critical need to better understand the relationship between aging and chronic pain.
Herein, we focus on one chronic pain state, fibromyalgia, and provide an overview of the evidence
suggesting that individuals with this chronic pain condition show signs of premature aging.