What Is Fibromyalgia? PDF  | Print |  E-mail

What is fibromyalgia? If you experience pain throughout your entire body, and you mostly feel exhausted and have undergone  numerous tests but without your doctor being able to diagnose what is wrong with you, then you may be suffering from a condition known as fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition which has the characteristic of widespread pain in your muscles, ligaments and tendons, in addition to fatigue and several tender points which are best described as places on your body where any degree of applied pressure causes pain.

Fibromyalgia is said to be prominent in about 2 percent of the population in the United States. Women are said to be at an increased risk of developing the condition in comparison to men. Additionally the risk of developing fibromyalgia progresses with age. Fibromyalgia symptoms have been observed to be triggered by a physical or emotional trauma. However in a number of cases there does not appear to be a noticeable trigger.

What is Fibromyalgia

If you ask what Fibromyalgia and do i have it, the signs and symptoms of fibromyalgia may be noticeably different in the affected individuals and may be more pronounced during seasonal weather changes, stress, physical activity or the time of day.

The pain that has been observed by suffers of fibromyalgia is often described as a perpetual dull ache that typically arises from the muscles. This widespread pain usually spans above and below the waist line and is generated throughout the entire body.

  • Fibromyalgia may be worsened when firm pressure is applied to certain areas of your body which are called tender points. These tender point locations may include:
  • Sides of hips
  • Upper hips
  • Upper chest
  • Back of the head
  • Inner knees
  • Between shoulder blades
  • Top of shoulders
  • Front sides of neck
  • Outer elbows

People with fibromyalgia are normally still tired upon waking, even though they appear to get adequate amounts of sleep. Many experts believe that these people do not actually achieve the deep restorative stage of sleep which is necessary for overall well being. Sleep disorders that appear to be correlated to fibromyalgia include restless legs syndrome and sleep apnea.

  • Many people who are affected by fibromyalgia may also have:
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Restless legs syndrome
  • Depression
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Endometriosis
  • Headaches
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Lupus

Doctors do not yet know what prompts the development of fibromyalgia, but it is most likely as a result of a variety of interdependent factors. These may include genetics, infections and physical and/or emotional trauma.  And while researchers are still determining the causes and possible treatments, you now know the answer to the question, "What is fibromyalgia?"