What is Fibromyalgia? Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain disorder that is characterized by fatigue, tenderness in localized areas of the body and musculoskeletal pain. Fibromyalgia does not affect any internal organs, nor does it cause any joint deformities.
What are the Causes of Fibromyalgia?
Researchers are constantly looking at several explanations for the causes of fibromyalgia. Some researchers are looking at hormonal or chemical imbalances that affect the signals that nerves send the brain. Others believe that because those who have fibromyalgia experience a “deep” level or threshold of pain that the syndrome may be related to stress, trauma or other illnesses.
There are also other theories which are more speculative in nature, such as, some people who have fibromyalgia may have lower levels of a neurotransmitter called serotonin. In addition to having lower levels of serotonin, fibromyalgia sufferers may also have an increased level of substance P in their bodies as well. This chemical causes pain signals in the body to be greatly amplified. Although there are many theories about what causes fibromyalgia, researchers agree that the syndrome is a result of not one but many different events either emotional, physical or a combination of both.
What Are the Symptoms of Fibromyalgia?
There are numerous symptoms that are associated with fibromyalgia, so much so that the syndrome is often mistaken for other medical illnesses. The main symptoms of the syndrome include muscle and joint pain as well as tender points at various spots along the body that are very painful when touched. The pain that is felt when one has fibromyalgia is very deep and generally felt all over the body. Other symptoms of fibromyalgia include anxiety, depression, energy loss, migraines, sleep troubles, as well as the swelling and numbing of the body’s limbs.
What is the Treatment for Fibromyalgia?
Like most other medical conditions, there is not just one singular treatment that doctors use when dealing with patients that have fibromyalgia. The best treatment option for those with fibromyalgia usually consists of taking various treatments and combining them into one multi-treatment plan. For example, a doctor may prescribe pain medications and anti-depressants to help control the pain and depression that is associated with fibromyalgia. Then, a doctor may also recommend other treatments such as physical therapy, exercise and physical activity, as well as relaxation and stress reduction techniques. Traditional medicinal treatments and alternative treatments combined with various types of lifestyle changes is typically viewed as the best plan of treatment when dealing with fibromyalgia.