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Diagnosing Fibromyalgia Remains a Challenge | The Natural Cure To Fibromyalgia

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia Remains a Challenge

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As the title indicates, fibromyalgia is a very complicated condition diagnosing fibromyalgia can be a long drawn out affair.

The problem with fibromyalgia is that it has a number of different symptoms, which can appear to be an indication of other conditions. At one point in the history of fibromyalgia it was considered by most doctors as a neurotic ailment. Fortunately, they now know better. Recent studies and researches have concluded that fibromyalgia is related to rheumatic conditions, although the exact cause is not known.

When trying to diagnose fibromyalgia there are certain criteria that a doctor will look for to differentiate fibromyalgia from other diseases. 

The most common indication of fibromyalgia is widespread musculoskeletal pain that has been present for 3 months or more. The time period is important. The pain must not be related to any other condition.

Accompanying the pain there are 18 ‘tender points’ on the body that fibromyalgia sufferers will react too more sensitively than others do. These tender points are found on the back of your head, upper back and neck, upper chest, elbows, hips and knees.

The test is to place 4kg of pressure on these points and gauge the reaction. 4kg of pressure is just enough to make the skin change color when pressing with a finger. Usually in order to confirm fibromyalgia 11 out of the 18 tender points must be problematic. The pain is also accompanied by stiffness along with other symptoms.

Other common symptoms of fibromyalgia are fatigue and sleep disorders. It has been observed that people with fibromyalgia exhibit abnormal tiredness even if they’ve had enough sleep during the night, not a common occurrence for fibromyalgia sufferers.

Sleep disorders are very common among fibromyalgia sufferers; with patients brain activity while sleeping resembling waking brain waves. This means that deep sleep is not achieved, a time when most of the healing and rejuvenation happens in the body, and sufferers wake up feeling fatigued.

Fibromyalgia patients also often fall asleep okay only to wake up in the middle of the night and be unable to go back to sleep

Regular severe headaches are another symptom of fibromyalgia with up to 40% of patients reporting them. Usually they are tension headaches that occur due to back and neck pain. Facial pain can also occur, along with the condition called temporomandibular joint dysfunction, which targets the jaw joints, and surrounding muscles, are common in people with fibromyalgia.

Irritable bowel syndrome can accompany fibromyalgia along with heightened sensitivity in the areas of sight, smell and touch.

Other common signs and symptoms include depression; also felt are numbness or tingling sensations in the hands and feet. People with fibromyalgia also tend to have difficulty concentrating.

It is also normal to experience mood changes, chest pains, dry eyes, skin and mouth, painful menstrual periods, dizziness for people with fibromyalgia. People also feel anxious of their condition and their surroundings.

With all of the above symptoms you can see why it may be hard to diagnose fibromyalgia. Before visiting your doctor keep a record of all the symptoms you’re experiencing in a journal so that you can provide them with a detailed history to smooth out the process and reduce the diagnostic time.

If you haven’t already done so you can grab your free copy of the free fibromyalgia newsletter and discover more about diagnosing fibromyalgia and natural treatment options to relieve symptoms.



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2 Responses

  1. Rita Spaltholz
    February 29th, 2008 | 12:14 am

    Is Fibromyalgia an inherited illness? I have a daughter that has it, and I have never been told that I have it, but I seem to have a lot of symptoms that you mentioned above. Is it related to rheumatoid arthritis, I had a mother that had rheumatoid arthritis, and I was told that I have osteoarthritis. Could I have Fibromyalgia also?

  2. March 9th, 2008 | 6:17 am

    Rita - Fibro does seem to have a genetic link (although that is not the only potential cause) and it is not unusual for mother and daughter to both have the condition. If you are getting the symptoms of FMS then it may be you also have it.

    It might be a good idea to see the doctor your daughter consulted for a diagnosis so you can be sure.

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