Can it be Treated?
There is no one treatment that has been proven to be effective. Treatment has to take a holistic approach. The main goal of treatment for fibromyalgia is reducing the pain levels and helping the patient get back to the active life they want to live.
Initial treatments usually include:
• Physiotherapy (pain relieving treatments and exercise prescription)
• Education (How to get a good nights sleep, what activities will stress your symptoms)
• Stress relief tools (massage and relaxation techniques)
• Re-defining the patients daily nutrition regime. Eating a healthier well balanced diet.
Fibromyalgia is becoming a more commonly recognized condition in which a person has experienced long term, body wide pain and tenderness in the joint, tendons, muscles, and other soft tissues.
Pain is the main factor associated with fibromyalgia. The pain can range from mild to severe in nature.
- Painful areas are called tender points. Tender points are found in the soft tissue on the back of the neck, shoulders, chest, lower back, hips, shins, elbows, and knees. The pain then spreads out from these areas.
- The pain may feel like a deep ache, or a shooting, burning pain.
- The joints are not affected, although the pain may feel like it is coming from the joints.
- People with fibromyalgia tend to wake up with body aches and stiffness. For some people, pain improves during the day and gets worse at night but most people have pain all day long.
- Pain may get worse with activity, cold or damp weather, anxiety, and stress.
- Fatigue, depressed mood, and sleep problems are seen in almost all people with fibromyalgia. Many say that they can’t get to sleep or stay asleep, and they feel tired when they wake up.
Other symptoms of fibromyalgia may include:
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Memory and concentration problems
- Numbness and tingling in hands and feet
- Reduced ability to exercise
- Tension or migraine headaches
What are the causes of Fibromyalgia?
The actual cause of fibro is unknown however doctors have found possible triggers to include:
- Physical or emotional trauma
- Abnormal pain response – areas in the brain that are responsible for pain may react differently in fibromyalgia patients
- Sleep disturbances
- Infection, such as a virus, although none has been identified
The following conditions may be seen with fibromyalgia or mimic its symptoms:
- Chronic neck or back pain
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)
- Lyme disease
- Sleep disorders
How do I get diagnosed with Fibromyalgia?
Your Doctor can diagnosis you after ruling out all other potential causes of your symptoms. To be diagnosed with fibromyalgia, you must have had at least 3 months of widespread pain, and pain and tenderness in at least 11 of 18 areas, including
- Arms (elbows)
- Lower back
- Rib cage
Blood and urine tests are usually normal. However, tests may be done to rule out other conditions that may have similar symptoms.