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What Are the Causes of Pain All Over the Body?

author image Martin Hughes
Martin Hughes is a chiropractic physician, health writer and the co-owner of a website devoted to natural footgear. He writes about health, fitness, diet and lifestyle. Hughes earned his Bachelor of Science in kinesiology at the University of Waterloo and his doctoral degree from Western States Chiropractic College in Portland, Ore.
What Are the Causes of Pain All Over the Body?
Some conditions can cause pain throughout the whole body.

Some health conditions can cause pain throughout the entire body. Muscle pain may be a sign of a condition affecting the whole body, although all over pain can also be caused by inadequate blood flow to the tissues and nervous system disorders. Total body pain can be debilitating, and it can significantly affect a person's quality of life.

Chronic Hypoxia

Chronic hypoxia can cause pain all over the body. Chronic hypoxia is a state in which oxygen transport throughout the body fails to meet the tissues' demand for oxygen. It can be caused by numerous medical conditions, including conditions associated with chronic blood loss, cardiac or heart disorders, pulmonary edema or fluid accumulation in the lungs and rapid changes in elevation, such as moving from sea level to higher altitudes. Many of these conditions can cause pain or discomfort throughout the body. Common signs and symptoms associated with chronic hypoxia include: reduced cognitive abilities; chronic mental and physical fatigue; and a reduced ability to perform certain tasks. The Hyperbaric Oxygen Info website states that, unless the underlying cause of chronic hypoxia is treated, the condition can lead to serious complications, including death.


Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that involves widespread pain, tenderness and numerous other symptoms. Fibromyalgia is an arthritis-related condition, although it does not cause joint inflammation or damage. The majority of people affected by fibromyalgia are women. In fact, between 80 and 90 percent of people with fibromyalgia are women, states the The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases. Most cases of fibromyalgia manifest during middle age. Common signs and symptoms associated with fibromyalgia include: pain in specific areas on both sides of the body, fatigue and sleep disturbances. Fibromyalgia is also associated with other medical conditions including irritable bowel syndrome, post-traumatic stress disorder and lupus.

Somatization Disorder

Somatization disorder can cause pain throughout the body. Somatization disorder is a chronic condition characterized by physical symptoms that are caused by psychological problems. A person with somatization disorder has no apparent physical problems. Most cases of this disorder manifest before the age of 30, and it is more common in woman than men. According to Medline Plus, a person with somatization disorder has numerous physical complaints that may last for years and involve chronic pain associated with the digestive system, nervous system and reproductive system. Researchers are studying the connections between the brain, digestive system and immune system to determine the cause of somatization disease. Although a person with somatization disorder may exhibit no apparent physical problems, the pain or discomfort she experiences can significantly affect her activities of daily living.

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