What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia remains an elusive disease. It is really a syndrome, or a collection of problems that share pain, sleep disturbance, fatigue, abdominal discomfort, and trouble concentrating. Others experienced list of other problems, but everybody shares the common experience of lost quality of life.
Causes, incidence, and risk factorsThe cause is unknown. Possible causes or triggers of fibromyalgia include:
The following conditions may be seen with fibromyalgia or mimic its symptoms:
- 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.
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Memory and concentration problems
- Numbness and tingling in hands and feet
- Reduced ability to exercise
- Tension or migraine headaches
Signs and testsTo 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
TreatmentThe goal of treatment is to help relieve pain and other symptoms, and to help a person cope with the symptoms.
The first type of treatment may involve:
However, many other drugs are also used to treat the condition, including:
Other recommendations include: