Fibromyalgia is a disorder that affects the muscles and soft tissues. Symptoms of fibromyalgia are severe body pains, mental distress, joint pains like arthritis, fatigue; sleep problems, which can be managed through proper medications and lifestyle changes.
These symptoms accumulate over a period of time due to many reasons such as physical trauma, surgery, infection or psychological stress. There is no particular reason for this problem. No lab tests or X-rays shows up the problem. Doctors diagnose it based on the symptoms. Fibromyalgia does not damage your joints or organs.
The main symptom of fibromyalgia is muscle pain throughout the body, sleep problems, stiffness in joints and muscles in early hours, headache, irritable bowel syndrome, painful menstrual cramps, sensitivity to cold and heat, restless leg syndrome (RLS), fatigue, anxiety or depression, numbness or tingling.
Fibromyalgia often comes with other painful conditions such as
- Interstitial cystitis or painful bladder syndrome
- pelvic and urinary problems
- joint disorders
- problem while urination
Who can get fibromyalgia?
Women between 35 to 60 years of age have high chances of developing fibromyalgia. Women are more likely to get 10 times more than men. Even doctors aren’t sure about this.
The exact cause of fibromyalgia is not known. However, present thinking in the arena of Rheumatology advises that fibromyalgia is a problem with central pain processing in the brain, where there may be an enlarged sensitivity or perception of pain to a given trigger.
There are many factors that are included:
- Physical trauma such as car accident or any other.
- Genetics- women whose close relative with fibromyalgia have higher risk of developing the disorder.
- Repetitive injuries
- It may occur due to Rheumatoid arthritis or other autoimmune diseases, such as lupus
- joint disorders
- Central nervous system (CNS) problems
Fibromyalgia is very difficult to diagnose, as the symptoms keep varying and there could be other disorders. The symptoms are very much similar to other conditions like hypothyroidism or rheumatoid arthritis.
There is no specific X-ray or blood tests or scans to confirm fibromyalgia. The diagnosis of fibromyalgia was made based on the specific tender points in certain parts of your body.
Earlier some miscellaneous points were used to diagnose the condition, but now it is no longer recommended to diagnose fibromyalgia.