Hi, my name is Fibromyalgia. Maybe you’ve heard of me, but like most women I am poorly understood. While I pride myself on being so mysterious, I think I need to set the record straight on a few things. First of all, I am real. If you don’t believe me, ask one of the 5 million people in the United States that live with me every day. I mean, how much pain and debilitation does a gal have to cause before someone starts taking her seriously!? Sorry, I tend to get emotional. I just think it’s time I get the respect I deserve. If you want to know more about me, keep reading. I’ll open up about causes, symptoms, and who’s at risk of becoming my new best friend.
Where did I come from? Oh wouldn’t you like to know. I’m not ready to reveal all just yet. However, I’ll hint that it may be due to problems in the brain, spinal cord and nerves.
I prefer to keep company with other women, but not exclusively. The important qualities I look for are as follows:
- Physical/Emotional Trauma
- Family history of me
- Certain infections
- Autoimmune diseases
I do love my job, and I am proficient in initiating discomfort in the following areas:
- Deep muscle pain
- Painful tender points
- Morning stiffness
- Irritable Bowel
- Sleep Problems (Oh did I wake you?)
- Urinary problems
One of my biggest pet peeves is when people get me confused with, Arthur. I’m sure you know him as Arthritis. Yes, Arthur is a pain but he only causes pain in the joints. I know I risk sounding braggadocios here, but I can cause pain throughout your entire body! And here’s the real kicker. I’m hard to diagnose. There is no specific blood test or X-ray to prove my existence! However, with the right evaluation of tender points, a diagnosis is not impossible. I told you I was mysterious.
Okay, let’s talk about treatment. Science is finally starting to take me seriously. You may find relief using some of the following options:
- Pain Medication
- Antidepressants such as Cymbalta
- Lyrica (Calms excited nerves)
- Physical Therapy
- Medical Marijuana