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Fibromyalgia: Debilitating, Widespread Pain

Fibromyalgia: Debilitating, Widespread Pain
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Fibromyalgia

widespread pain


Fibromyalgia is a chronic, debilitating condition that causes widespread pain and an increased reaction to pain or pressure throughout the body. It can also affect other systems throughout the body, leading to a myriad of other symptoms. The symptoms of fibromyalgia are the result of miscommunication and malfunctioning of the central nervous system. For this reason, the condition is also referred to as “central sensitization syndrome.” Fibromyalgia is a common condition, being found in approximately 8% of the world’s population. It is more common in women than men and can be diagnosed at any age.

What Causes Fibromyalgia?

Some cases of fibromyalgia are thought to be genetic, with patients having a family member affected by the condition. The exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, but it is often linked to the following factors:

  • Environmental factors
  • Psychological stress
  • Mental trauma
  • Certain infections

Types Of Fibromyalgia

There is only one type of fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia Symptoms

  • Widespread pain throughout the body
  • Increased sensitivity to pain or discomfort
  • Sleep disturbances/Insomnia
  • Fatigue
  • Cognitive difficulties
  • Memory loss
  • Loss of bowel or bladder control
  • Constipation
  • Low blood pressure
  • Restless legs
  • Numbness or tingling throughout the body
  • Sensitivity to noise
  • Depression
  • Anxiety

widespread pain

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia

There is no diagnostic testing that can definitely diagnose fibromyalgia. Diagnosis is based on a thorough evaluation of your medical history and reported symptoms. A primary care physician can typically diagnose fibromyalgia, but they may refer you to other specialists to rule out other conditions that can mimic the symptoms of fibromyalgia.

Treating Fibromyalgia

There is no cure for fibromyalgia, so treatment focuses on managing symptoms. Anti-seizure medications, including Gabapentin, have been shown to reduce some of the symptoms of fibromyalgia. Cognitive behavioral therapy and physical therapy can also help patients to cope with some of the symptoms that fibromyalgia produces.

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