What is Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is an extremely complex disorder that arises out of several underlying conditions making it difficult to diagnose. It triggers widespread pain throughout the muscles and joints of the body. This disorder is often confused with other diseases like arthritis as it shows similar symptoms. Scientists have a theory that fibromyalgia alters the way in which pain carrying signals are processed by the brain.
What Triggers Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia can be triggered by various conditions or events, therefore, the exact cause of this disorder is not known. Researchers are of the consensus that traumatic experiences, injury, surgery, extreme psychological stress, or anxiety can be the reason behind this condition. It is difficult to predict a single triggering point of the syndrome as it builds up over a significant period of time.
It found that fibromyalgia is more pronounced in women than men as they go through phases like menopause which can be psychologically, or physically, traumatic for some women.
Fibromyalgia creates “trigger points” or “regions of pain” which are tender points from where the pain emanates. The symptoms include:
Chronic widespread pain: People ailing from fibromyalgia suffer from dull chronic pain that can last for months. This ache becomes widespread when it affects both sides of the body.
Fibromyalgia fog: This is a psychological condition in which a person’s cognitive abilities are distorted. The patient is unable to concentrate on tasks and suffers from memory lapses.
Gastrointestinal and urinary issues: Another symptom is the malfunctioning of a person’s gastrointestinal system causing excessive flatulence, irritable bowel syndrome, and constipation. A patient also shows symptoms of painful bladder syndrome.
Psychological dullness: Fibromyalgia patients might show symptoms of depression and anxiety. They sleep for long hours without feeling fresh and wake up exhausted.
Fibromyalgia Diagnosis at Dunes Pain
As mentioned, this disorder is extremely complicated to diagnose as it can be mistaken for some other illness. Physicians at Dunes Pain Clinic will do a detailed examination, over a long period of time, to check whether a person is suffering from Fibromyalgia. They will ask if a person has chronic pain lasting for over 3 months and will check for any tender points in the body. Physicians will also investigate the fact that whether the pain is widespread or not.
There are no scans or blood tests for detecting Fibromyalgia, yet physicians may conduct such tests and imaging. This is done to rule out any other condition like nerve compressions, arthritis, or thyroid-related issues that might be causing the pain. Doctors will also check your cognitive abilities and how well you have been sleeping.
Only when the possibility of any underlying issue is ruled out will fibromyalgia be confirmed.
Holistic treatment is required for patients suffering from fibromyalgia, as currently, there is no cure for this condition. Doctors and medical experts at Dunes Pain Clinic might go for multiple categories of treatments to reduce the symptoms of this disorder.
Conservative Therapies: You might undergo physiotherapy and occupational therapy to relax and make your body stronger. Massages also aid in relaxing psychological stress.
Medication: For reducing your pain and discomfort, over-the-counter painkillers and NSAIDs might be prescribed to you. Drugs like anti-depressants and muscle relaxants might also be administered for relaxation. For sleep, the doctor might give you sleep-related drugs like cyclobenzaprine.
Lifestyle Changes: Certain lifestyle changes like exercising, meditation, deep breathing, doing yoga, and a healthy diet also helps in reducing the symptoms of fibromyalgia.
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