The term fibromyalgia is made up of three words – fibro for fibrous tissues like tendons, my for muscles and algia for pain. Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition involving pain throughout the body, heightened response to pain and overwhelming fatigue. However, the location, duration and severity of pain varies from one individual to another. The feeling of fatigue ranges from feeling drained to complete exhaustion and it may come and go suddenly.
In addition to pain and fatigue, fibromyalgia symptoms may include –
- Waking up tired and feeling unrefreshed
- ‘brain fog’ which includes lack of concentration, temporary memory impairment and mixing up words
- IBS or Irritable bowel syndrome
- sensitivity to changes in the weather, noise, lights, smoke and other external stimuli
Sounds baffling? Rare?
Unfortunately, fibromyalgia is a common condition but it is difficult to diagnose because there are no laboratory tests and investigations to make an accurate diagnosis. In addition, many signs of fibromyalgia are also found in other conditions, such as myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
The diagnosis for fibromyalgia depends mainly on 2 symptoms –
- pain in all parts of the body for at least 3 months
- pain in at most tender points on the body when pressed
Treatment for fibromyalgia is as difficult as its diagnosis. Fortunately, specialized pain management doctors at clinics, such as Pain and Spine in Phoenix, AZ, can reduce pain and improve sleep and quality of life. A combination of medication, physical therapy, trigger point injections, massage therapy, acupuncture and more is used to help you obtain lasting pain relief and live a life you enjoy.