Fibromyalgia is a mystery condition with unclear causes and difficult diagnosis. But if you suspect you have this condition or you have been diagnosed with it, it’s important to learn about the treatment options that provide you the best chance for relief.
What is Fibromyalgia?
More women experience fibromyalgia than men. The cause of fibromyalgia isn’t completely known, but fibromyalgia signs often show up after either a physical or emotional trauma. Fibromyalgia is characterized by pain and tenderness all over the body.
Fibromyalgia pain, unlike arthritis pain, is not caused due to inflammation or damage to the joints or tissues. Yet it causes considerable pain and tenderness throughout the body. The body becomes too sensitive that hurts to the touch. In addition to widespread pain, it also causes tiredness, sleep problems and even memory and thinking issues, a phenomenon referred to as ‘fibro fog.’
While there is no test to diagnose fibromyalgia, your doctor would still perform multiple tests to rule out other conditions that may present with similar symptoms. Fibromyalgia diagnosis is made if there is chronic pain lasting at least 3 months, painful sites throughout the body, and behavioral symptoms such as fatigue and cognitive difficulties.
Fibromyalgia is treated with a combination of medications, physical therapy and lifestyle modifications. Medications that alter some brain chemicals or block the activity of the pain transmitting nerve cells. Some doctors may also prescribe antidepressants.