Fibromyalgia (formerly known as fibrositis) is a chronic condition causing muscle pain, fatigue, stiffness and tenderness of the muscles, tendons and joints.
DESCRIPTION OF FIBROMYALGIA
Although fibromyalgia has no known cure, it can be controlled. Most patients learn to adjust to their symptoms and are able to participate in normal daily activities. In more severe cases some adjustments to the person’s lifestyle need to be made.
People suffering from fibromyalgia can have very different symptoms. The most common symptom is a widespread chronic pain. Other symptoms of this condition may include:
- Persistent fatigue that influences the patient’s daily activity level
- Sleep problems (difficulty falling asleep as well as staying asleep)
- Frequent headaches
- Memory and concentration problems
- Morning stiffness
- Psychological problems, such as anxiety and depression
People with fibromyalgia experience periods when symptoms become milder or even completely disappear. At other times, however, condition abruptly worsens. Fibromyalgia can also be affected by several external variables, such as stress or weather.
TEST & DIAGNOSIS
There are no specific tests for the diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Most often it is identified when other conditions with similar symptoms have been ruled out with lab tests. The doctor must also perform a physical exam. Fibromyalgia is usually suspected when both of the following criteria are fulfilled:
- Widespread pain that has been present for at least 3 months
- Pain or tenderness at 11 or more specific tender points.
However, the diagnosis of fibromyalgia is very difficult since the person can have this disease even if he/she doesn’t meet those two conditions.
There is no known cure for fibromyalgia. Because of that, treatment is usually focused on managing and relieving the symptoms. It must be tailored to the specific needs of every individual.
Treatment may include medications for pain relief,better sleep and muscle relaxation. Some people find that symptoms can be more tolerable with the help of cognitive-behavior therapy.
Fibromyalgia can be causing your tiredness, but so can many other medical conditions. Here are some of the other medical conditions that can cause tiredness:
- Overactive Thyroid Gland – Hyperthyroid
- Underactive Thyroid Gland – Hypothyroidism
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)
- Iron Deficiency Anemia
- Sleep Disorders / Sleep Apnea