Fibromyalgia has long been thought of as a mysterious chronic syndrome. It is estimated there are over 4 million sufferers in the U.S., with the majority of those being women. Typically, the symptoms and discomfort are introduced between the ages of 30 to 50. For many, the debilitating pain and exhaustion may make normal work or home life impossible. Some suggest that the fibromyalgia could be genetic or lay resting internally for several years before inflicting chaos on the body. Medical professionals believe the causes may include severe stress, an accident, infection, surgery, genetics, or a life changing experience.
Fibromyalgia is chronic, or lasting for an extended period of time. The patient may appear fine however, physically they may be experiencing extreme pain, fatigue, stress, sensory abnormality, headaches, trouble concentrating, and depression.
Currently there is no specific test to diagnose fibromyalgia. That means ruling out other diseases with x-rays, MRI, and blood tests to eliminate diseases such as thyroid disease or lupus. An exam to verify fibromyalgia may include a physician conducting a light pressure test on 18 specific areas of the body around the neck, back, arms, and knees. The slightest pressure on these areas may cause abnormal levels of pain signals to the brain.
There are many holistic remedies for fibromyalgia, however, none have been scientifically proven nor medically approved. Some sufferers spend years experimenting with numerous methods before finding relief while others aren’t ever able to escape their discomfort. There is no current cure for fibromyalgia, however, there are treatments to reduce and control the painful and debilitating symptoms. Some recommendations have been acupuncture, behavioral therapy, diet, exercise (yoga or tai chi), or medications (OTC, antidepressants, or muscle relaxants).
Recent studies suggest the FODMAP diet restricted food plan may help fibromyalgia sufferers in reducing their pain levels. The low-sugar, high fiber foods on this type of eating plan may also reduce symptoms for those who suffer from irritable bowel syndrome or Crohn’s disease as well.
At Bradenton Pain & Wellness Center, we understand the many complications of fibromyalgia and how it affects a quality of life. Our goal is to help our patients reduce the pain and discomfort of this often-misunderstood syndrome.
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