FIBROMYALGIA: WHAT IT IS, SYMPTOMS, DIAGNOSIS, AND TREATMENT
What is Fibromyalgia
The word fibromyalgia (FM) means pain in the muscles and in the fibrous tissue (ligaments and tendons). Fibromyalgia is characterized by generalized musculoskeletal pain and painful sensation to pressure at specific points (painful points). This pain resembles that originating in the joints, but it is not an articular disease.
Fibromyalgia is frequent, it suffers between 2% and 6% of the population, especially women. It can present as only alteration (primary fibromyalgia) or associated with other diseases (concomitant fibromyalgia).
In general terms, we can say that fibromyalgia consists of an anomaly in the perception of pain so that they are perceived as painful, stimuli that usually are not. In addition to pain, fibromyalgia can cause widespread stiffness, especially when getting up in the morning, and a poorly defined feeling of inflammation in the hands and feet. You can also notice undefined tingling that affects diffusely especially the hands.
The person who seeks the help of the doctor usually says “it hurts everything”, but other times it is referred to as burning, discomfort or discomfort. Pain often varies in relation to the time of day, level of activity, climatic changes, lack of sleep or stress.
In addition to pain, fibromyalgia causes many other symptoms: 90% of patients have fatigue, 70-80% sleep disorders and up to 25% anxiety or depression. Symptoms such as poor tolerance to exertion, a feeling of generalized rigidity (especially when getting up in the morning), a feeling of poorly defined inflammation of the hands and feet, tingling that affects diffusely on the hands, headaches, pain in the hands, etc. are also very frequent. menstruation, irritable colon, dry mouth, and eyes.
The cause of this alteration is not known, but it is thought that there are many factors involved. There are people who develop the disease without apparent cause and in others, it begins after identifiable processes such as a bacterial or viral infection, a car accident or in other cases it appears after another known disease limits the quality of life (rheumatoid arthritis, lupus erythematosus, etc.). These triggering agents do not seem to cause the disease, but what they probably do is to awaken it in a person who already has an anomaly hidden in the regulation of their ability to respond to certain stimuli.
Fibromyalgia is recognized as a syndrome, which means that the rheumatologist identifies it when it finds in a certain person some alterations that agree with those that have been previously fixed by experts for its diagnosis.
It is very important to establish a firm diagnosis because it saves a pilgrimage in search of diagnoses or treatments, it improves the anxiety that comes from being bad without knowing why and allows setting realistic goals.
The disease has no definitive cure. The aim of the treatment is to improve the pain and treat the accompanying symptoms, to achieve a great improvement in the quality of life of these patients.
It is important to know the nature of the disease and what are the triggering factors of outbreaks, perform treatment of associated psychological disorders if there are (anxiety and depression) and daily physical exercise.
It is important to establish the best conditions for a restful sleep. Have a bed not too soft or too hard, as well as a low pillow. Avoid the intake of stimulating substances and drinks, extreme temperatures and noise and lights.
Analgesics partially reduce pain and you should only take it if your doctor tells you to. Other groups of medications used are muscle relaxants that should be taken in short batches and some antidepressant drugs that increase serotonin levels and improve the symptoms of fibromyalgia, but all of them must be provided under medical prescription.
Although it has a benign character because it does not produce physical consequences (it does not destroy the joints, it does not cause irreversible injuries or deformities) nor does it influence the survival of the patient, the impact that it causes on the quality of life of the patient is very variable. some people to others being able to be limiting.
Tired and exhausted by your crazy lifestyle where you are active 24 hours a day, 7 days a week? If you suffer from these symptoms without being able to relieve them, check these 8 signs that could indicate that you have fibromyalgia.
1. To be exhausted Are you tired all the time? Maybe you attributed this condition to the fact that you work hard. Maybe you have tried to sleep longer and eat better, but nothing helps you? Exhaustion is a symptom of fibromyalgia, a chronic disorder that also causes widespread pain and tenderness. In part, burnout can come from your body’s efforts to fight fibromyalgia. The common pains and problems associated with fibromyalgia can cause sleep disturbances, leaving you tired the next day. Also, be aware of these signs of chronic fatigue syndrome that you might ignore.
2. Increased sensitivity Sensory symptoms may be a symptom of fibromyalgia. Your clothes may even feel heavier than normal for you, almost oppressive! Banging on the corner of the table usually only hurts a few minutes. In people with fibromyalgia, the pain can last for hours.
3. Joint pain Many people with fibromyalgia say they suffer from generalized pain, especially in the joints, for no apparent reason. If over-the-counter pain relievers do nothing to relieve the aches and pains you feel, it may mean that joint pain is related to fibromyalgia.
4. Bowel problems Irritable bowel syndrome is closely related to fibromyalgia. Diarrhea, the urge to evacuate your intestines and even the inability to empty them because of muscle stiffness are all potential signs of fibromyalgia. While you can attribute these intestinal problems to other causes, it is worth considering fibromyalgia as the possible culprit. Here are some other things that your stool can reveal about your health.
5. Headaches Severe headaches causing nausea and vomiting may be caused by fibromyalgia. If you have these debilitating headaches, consult your doctor to find the cause.
6. Sensitivity to temperature People with fibromyalgia have an increased sensitivity to temperature. When the temperature drops, those who suffer from fibromyalgia may feel it more drastically than others. If you are always colder than those around you, it could be Raynaud’s disease, a disorder of decreased circulation to the extremities, or it could be a sign of fibromyalgia.
7. More intense menstrual pain Women account for 80-90% of all fibromyalgia diagnoses. While extreme menstrual cramps can be caused by many other factors, they can also be a symptom of fibromyalgia. Muscle stiffness, in general, is a problem, so when a woman with fibromyalgia is menstruating, her usual muscle cramps can be magnified.
8. Concentration problems Being unable to concentrate or feeling as if you were suffocating in your thoughts could be a common symptom of fibromyalgia called “Fibrous Fog”. Some of these symptoms may be caused by a lack of sleep, other theories argue that this can be caused by fibromyalgia. Consult your doctor to discuss any recent memory loss or any difficulty in concentrating that is not explained by other stressors in your life.