Cognitive biases in the diagnosis of fibromyalgia

Cognitive biases are predictable patterns of errors that can be repeated during decision-making processes. They exist in the most diverse areas, from administration to medicine. Within medicine, diagnosing diseases based on nonspecific symptoms has become increasingly susceptible to these biases.

Fibromyalgia is a disease for which there is no laboratory test to confirm the diagnosis. In the current literature, it can be diagnosed based on the physician’s clinical experience or diagnosed based on a series of guidelines that lead to the diagnosis.

Although there is no authoritative evidence that cognitive biases interfere with medical decision-making, diseases that depend entirely on a patient’s symptoms for diagnosis should be cognitively oriented by definition. Increasing knowledge and sensitizing professionals to recognize these cognitive biases may be the first step to reduce misdiagnosis of fibromyalgia.

Access the full article:DE SANTANA, Felipe Mendonça; COBRA, Jayme Fogagnolo; FIGUEIREDO, Camille Pinto. Cognitive biases in fibromyalgia diagnosis. Joint Bone Spine, p. 105339-105339, 2022.