Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition that involves widespread musculoskeletal pain and is often accompanied by fatigue.
Doctors find it very difficult to diagnose and as of yet the cause is unknown but it is likely to be a dormant abnormality that resides in the body and is made active by a significant event, for example, a serious infection, a road traffic accident or the onset of another ailment. Strangely enough it affects more women that men and can be aggravated by weather conditions, damp and draughty environments, allergies, stress and over working.
There are 26 known pain points over the body that Fibromyalgia patients can suffer with. Here are some of them; lower back, upper back, hips, groin, neck, head, face, shoulders, elbows, upper arm, lower arm, wrists, hands, fingers, ribs, thighs, knees, lower legs, feet and toes.
Symptoms do vary from patient to patient but commonly include aching or pain in all of their muscles, twitching and burning and itchy skin all of which seem to be exacerbated first thing in the morning. The degree of fatigue that the patient may suffer with can greatly vary from mild weariness and lack of energy to complete incapacitation with the arms and legs being rendered lifeless. Sufferers of chronic fatigue may feel drained, weighed down and find it near impossible to concentrate.
It is quite common for Fibromyalgia to bring with it other complications. A lot of patients may suffer with a sleep disorder, ranging from interrupted sleep to chronic, debilitating insomnia. As many as ĺ of sufferers will also develop Irritable Bowel Syndrome; constipation, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, flatulence and nausea. 50% of sufferers have to cope with severe migraines, tension headaches and depression.
Up to now, traditional treatments tend to firstly concentrate on improving and increasing the patientís amount of good quality sleep and reducing their horrendous pain levels. The lack of sleep obviously increases the sufferers problems as they have no way of resting and letting the body cope and deal with the situation so medications such as clonazepam are used to aid sleep. The hormones that regulate pain, sleep and our immune system are also boosted by the use of medications like amitriptyllin. Strong painkillers (opioids) are used along with muscle relaxants.
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