Symptoms of fibromyalgia include chronic pain and fatigue. From WebMD, learn about all the symptoms of fibromyalgia and when to call a doctor. Because the classic symptoms of fibromyalgia -- widespread muscle and Many people with fibro -- also called fibromyalgia syndrome or FMS. Fibromyalgia has many symptoms that tend to vary from person to person. The main symptom is widespread pain.
Many fibromyalgia patients have an associated sleep disorder that prevents them from getting deep, restful, restorative sleep. Medical researchers have documented specific and distinctive abnormalities in the Stage 4 deep sleep of FM patients.
During sleep, individuals with FM are constantly interrupted by bursts of awake-like brain activity, limiting the amount of time they spend in deep sleep. Additional symptoms may include: This information changes every 20 seconds. Click the dots to go back or move forward. NFA Facebook page and so much more! A low fermentable oligo-di-mono-saccharides and polyols FODMAP diet is a balanced therapy for fibromyalgia with nutritional and symptomatic benefits.
Acupuncture for fibromyalgia in primary care: Acupuncture in medicine, 34 4 , MNT is the registered trade mark of Healthline Media. Any medical information published on this website is not intended as a substitute for informed medical advice and you should not take any action before consulting with a healthcare professional.
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Register take the tour. Fast facts on fibromyalgia: Here are some key points about fibromyalgia. More detail is in the main article. Fibromyalgia causes widespread pain, fatigue , and other types of discomfort. Symptoms resemble those of arthritis, but fibromyalgia affects the soft tissue, not the joints. The cause is unknown, but risk factors include traumatic injury, rheumatoid arthritis and other autoimmune disorders, such as lupus , and genetic factors.
There is no cure, but medications, exercise, acupuncture , and behavioral therapy can help relieve symptoms and improve sleep quality. Fibromyalgia can lead to widespread pain, sleep problems, and other symptoms. Around 20 percent of people with fibromyalgia try acupuncture within the first 2 years.
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It is possible for fibromyalgia to lead to depression. This is because the condition can be difficult to deal with, and low levels of certain hormones, such as serotonin, can make you prone to developing depression. If you think that you may be depressed, it is important to get help from your GP, or your fibromyalgia healthcare professional.
Paresthesia Paresthesia is an odd sensation of burning, prickling, tingling, 'pins and needles' or creeping on the skin. Joints Joints are the connection point between two bones that allow movement. Anxiety Anxiety is an unpleasant feeling when you feel worried, uneasy or distressed about something that may or may not be about to happen. Constipation Constipation is when you pass stools less often than usual, or when you are having difficulty going to the toilet because your stools are hard and small.
Diarrhoea Diarrhoea is the passing of frequent watery stools when you go to the toilet. The exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown. Research into people with fibromyalgia has identified a number of changes in the way that their body functions. However, what causes these changes in the first place, and how exactly these cause fibromyalgia, is still not clear.
One of the most likely causes of fibromyalgia is a problem with the way that pain messages are carried and received in your body. The central nervous system brain, spinal cord and nerves transmits information all over your body through a network of specialised cells. In people with fibromyalgia, the way that pain messages are processed is disturbed. This may explain why fibromyalgia results in constant feelings of pain and extreme sensitivity to pain. People with fibromyalgia have been found to have lower-than-normal levels of the hormones serotonin, noradrenaline also known as norepinephrine and dopamine.
Low levels of these hormones may be a key factor in the cause of fibromyalgia, as they each control many of the processes in the body. It is possible that disturbed sleep patterns may be a cause of fibromyalgia, rather than just a symptom. Fibromyalgia can prevent you from sleeping deeply and cause fatigue extreme tiredness. People with fibromyalgia who sleep badly also seem to feel more pain. This may suggest that the sleep problems in some way contribute to the other symptoms of fibromyalgia.
There may be some risk factors that can either make fibromyalgia more likely, or act as a trigger for the condition. There may be a genetic link to fibromyalgia, with some people being more likely than others to develop the condition due to their genes the units of genetic material inherited from their parents.
If this is the case, a genetic predisposition tendency could explain why some people develop fibromyalgia after some sort of trigger. There are several other conditions that can lead to fibromyalgia. In these cases, the condition is known as secondary fibromyalgia. Conditions that can cause fibromyalgia include:. It is also possible that there is no single cause of fibromyalgia, and that several of the above factors may combine to cause the condition.
Hormones Hormones are groups of powerful chemicals that are produced by the body and have a wide range of effects. Genetic Genetic is a term that refers to genes. Genes are the characteristics inherited from a family member. Inflammation Inflammation is the body's response to infection, irritation or injury, which causes redness, swelling, pain and sometimes a feeling of heat in the affected area. If you think you may have fibromyalgia, visit your GP.
Diagnosing fibromyalgia can be difficult, as there is no specific test that can diagnose the condition. The symptoms of fibromyalgia can be varied and very similar to those of several other conditions. Your GP will diagnose fibromyalgia based on you having a typical mix of symptoms and ruling out any other conditions that could be causing these. You may also have a physical examination, where you GP will check your entire body for any visible signs of fibromyalgia, such as swollen joints.
If your GP thinks you may have fibromyalgia, they will first have to rule out any other conditions that could be causing your symptoms. You may have blood tests, X-rays and other scans to rule out these and any other condition with symptoms similar to fibromyalgia.
If you are found to have another condition, you could still have fibromyalgia as well. Once all other conditions have been considered or ruled out, there are two criteria that can be used to confirm a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. If your symptoms fit within these criteria, it is likely you will be diagnosed with fibromyalgia. The tender points are the areas on your body where your pain is likely to be at its worst. They are places on the body where everyone is most sensitive to pain, so if you have fibromyalgia, these areas will be very painful.
There are tender points at the back of your neck, above each of your shoulder blades and the inside of your elbows. Your GP may also press other areas that are not tender points, to compare how much more painful the tender points are.
If your symptoms suggest you have another condition as well, you may need further tests to diagnose these. Identifying all possible conditions will help to guide your treatment. X-ray An X-ray is an imaging technique that uses high-energy radiation to show up abnormalities in bones and certain body tissue, such as breast tissue.
There is no cure for fibromyalgia, but treatment aims to ease your symptoms as much as possible and to improve your quality of life. Your treatment will be decided jointly between you and your GP, depending on what you prefer and what is available. Several different healthcare professionals may also be involved in your treatment, such as:. As fibromyalgia has a number of different symptoms, no single treatment will work for all of them. It is therefore likely you will need to try a variety of treatments to find a mix that suits you.
This will normally be a combination of medication and lifestyle changes. You may find it helpful to research fibromyalgia to improve your understanding of the condition. Many people also find support groups helpful. Just talking to someone who knows what you are going though can make you feel better. See the box to the right for more information, or the Useful links. You may need to take several different types of medicines for fibromyalgia, including painkillers and antidepressants.
A number of different medicines are described in more detail below. If you have fibromyalgia, you can treat your pain using simple painkillers, such as paracetamol. These are available over the counter from a pharmacy. Always read the manufacturer's instructions.
If paracetamol is not effective in easing your pain, your GP or another healthcare professional treating you may prescribe a stronger painkiller, such as codeine or tramadol. Research has found that tramadol can improve pain and may also help you function better in your daily activities. Antidepressant medicines for fibromyalgia are not prescribed specifically to treat depression.
They are used to boost the levels of certain neurotransmitters, such as serotonin, noradrenaline and dopamine. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that carry messages to and from the brain. It is thought that low levels of these neurotransmitters may be a factor in causing fibromyalgia, and that raising their levels may help to treat the condition and ease the pain of your symptoms.
There are many different types of antidepressants. The choice of medicine will depend on the type of fibromyalgia that you have, the severity of your symptoms and any side effects that the medicine may cause.
There are also two other types of medicine that affect the levels of neurotransmitters and are sometimes used to treat fibromyalgia:. For more information on the side effects of your particular medication, see the patient information leaflet that comes with it. As fibromyalgia can affect your sleeping patterns, you may wish to try medicines to help you sleep.
Everything you need to know about fibromyalgia
Researchers believe that fibromyalgia amplifies painful sensations by affecting the way your brain processes pain signals. Symptoms. Fibromyalgia is a painful and frustrating condition to live with. ~ Here are the most common symptoms of fibromyalgia and how to deal with. Fibromyalgia is largely understood disorder characterized by widespread chronic pain. Learn more about the symptoms, cause, diagnosis, and.