Category Archives: Fibromyalgia

Warning! Your Doctor May Ignore These 10 Causes Of Fibromyalgia

Published by:

Introduction

It is confirmed that the fibromyalgia affects about 10 million people in the U.S. This condition is characterized by the chronic pain, especially fatigue, muscle pain, brain fog, sleep disturbances or depression, cognitive impairment and painful points throughout your body.  The conventional medicine has yet to discover the cause of fibromyalgia and just offers treatment of the symptoms through antidepressants and pain medications.

On the other hand, the functional medicine, looks to discover the root cause of fibromyalgia and some other chronic diseases, treating the issue at the root level in order to restore the health of the patient.

1. GLUTEN INTOLERANCE

The gluten has been connected to more than 55 diseases and is usually called the “big masquerader.” The main reason for this is that many of the gluten intolerance symptoms are not digestive, but they are neurological, like cognitive impairment, pain, sleep problems, fatigue, behavioral problems and depression.

2. CANDIDA OVERGROWTH

The Candida is a yeast, or fungus, and a small amount of it lives in the intestines. When overproduced, the Candida can break down the wall of the intestines and enters the bloodstream, relaxing the toxic byproducts into the body and causing many unpleasant symptoms like fatigue, brain fog, digestive problems and pain.

3. THYROID

It is really important your doctor to check the 6 blood markers to measure the function of the thyroid gland.

It is important that the doctor uses the optimal levels rather than the general reference range when diagnosing the thyroid disorders. Getting the thyroid levels of the patient into an optimal range usually alleviates their brain fog, fatigue, depression and sleep disturbances.

4. VITAMIN DEFICIENCIES

Vitamin D, Vitamin B12, and magnesium deficiency are the most usual vitamin deficiencies seen in the patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia.

Several patients reversed the fibromyalgia symptoms completely with just magnesium. The best way to measure the magnesium is an RCB or red blood cell magnesium level, and that can be tested through the conventional lab.

5. LEAKY GUT AND SIBO OR SMALL INTESTINE BACTERIAL OVERGROWTH

There are more bacteria on us and in us than there are of our cells.

When the bacteria are out of balance because of sugar-rich diet or use of antibiotics, we can lose the ability to absorb and digest nutrients, especially B12. The gluten can also cause leaky gut and SIBO, and they can lead gluten intolerance and some other food intolerances.

6. MYCOTOXINS

The mycotoxins are toxic substances that are produced by the molds.

The conventional environmental mod testing just tests for mold spores levels and doesn’t tests for mycotoxins. Some doctors use a urine mycotoxin test to find out if some person has been exposed to those toxic molds.

7. MERCURY TOXICITY

The mercury is a toxic to the body and can be just one piece of the puzzle for those people with fibromyalgia. The doctors advise heavy metal testing using a post- and pre-DMPS urine test.

8. ADRENAL FATIGUE

The adrenal fatigue is because of the chronic stress. The chronic pain can be a stress to the adrenal glands, though it is usually not the initial adrenal stressor. The stressor is generally something like a Candida, food intolerances, vitamin deficiencies, mercury toxicity or mycotoxins.

9. MTHFR MUTATIONS

You can get this genetic test through the conventional lab.

If you have more mutations to the MTHFR gene, you will be less able to detoxify and methylate the toxins, like a lead and mercury. If you have more mutations in this gene, there are higher requirements for methyl-B12, methyl-B6 and folinic acid to keep the detoxification pathways working perfectly.

10. GLUTATHIONE DEFICIENCY

The glutathione is the most important part of the detoxification system of the body. The glutathione gets recycled in the body – unless the toxic burden gets high, or we lack GSTP1 and GSTM1, which are enzymes needed to produce glutathione and recycle.

Taking glutathione or precursors (alpha lipoic acid, NAC, milk thistle) usually help with fatigue.

Heal the gut

Many of these causes are correlative, and usually there is no just one root cause of fibromyalgia. Because the process of getting to the root can be so difficult, you should find a functional medicine physician to help uncover the root cause.

You do not need to mask the symptoms with antidepressants and pain medications. Some doctors can help you. If you suffer from some chronic illness like autoimmune disease, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, cancer or a more simple problems like IBS, acne, ADD, migraines, depression or anxiety – you must watch the following video.

Is It True That The Weather Affects Fibromyalgia Symptoms?

Published by:

beautiful young woman freezes in the winter suburb

Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain disease that affects about 2% of the world’s population, with most of the patients being women.  The primary symptoms are painful pressure points around the body, headaches, difficulty sleeping, increased sensitivity to light and sound, and unexplained fatigue.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for this mysterious disease. Scientists still have no idea why some people develop it while others don’t.

Many people who suffer from fibromyalgia also report experiencing a difference in pain levels as the weather changes.

According to a study by Ercolie Bossema, Ph.D. from Utrecht University in the Netherlands, “Many fibromyalgia patients report that certain weather conditions seem to aggravate their symptoms.” These changing weather conditions include precipitation, sunshine, and temperature.

And not just a few sufferers claim that the weather exacerbates their symptoms—nearly 92% cite the phenomenon

Unfortunately, according to Dr. Bossema’s study, their sense of pain might be inflated.

To explain this information further, the team gathered 333 female patients to participate in a study on how weather affects the symptoms of fibromyalgia.  The study participants, who had a average age of 47 and had been diagnosed around 2 years prior, answered a detail survey for a 28-day period.

Questions on the survey asked about the women’s pain and fatigue each day, while researchers gathered data on atmospheric pressure, sunshine duration, precipitation, air temperature, and relative humidity from the Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute.

The results were interesting: in only 10% of analyses, weather variables showed a significant (but small) effect on pain or fatigue symptoms.

This gave researchers the information they needed to make such claims that the weather doesn’t really affect fibromyalgia much at all.

Dr. Bossema states, “This study is the first to investigate the impact of weather on fibromyalgia symptoms in a large cohort, and our findings show no association between specific fibromyalgia patient characteristics and weather sensitivity.”

Do you agree that the weather doesn’t bother your fatigue and pain symptoms much? It’s important to remember that each case of fibromyalgia is different, so what one line of research says might not have anything to do with your illness.

If you are suffering from fibromyalgia, it’s always best to consult your doctor if you experience any changes in pain levels at any time.

To the Person Who Thinks My Fibromyalgia Isn’t Real

Published by:

Maybe you don’t know anything about fibromyalgia and are therefore ignorant of the facts. Maybe you’ve heard of fibromyalgia, but you believe it’s a nervous condition that’s “all in the head.” Or you acknowledge there might be something “wrong” with me, but you think I exaggerate my “condition.” I’m writing this letter to you because I want to clarify any incorrect assumptions you have consider FMS (fibromyalgia syndrome) and tell you how your assumptions make me feel.

When you believe this isn’t a “real” condition and those who claim to have FMS are just looking for attention:

I assure you, I and the estimated 3 to 6 percent of the world’s population with this condition (according to the National Fibromyalgia Association) didn’t wake up one morning and decide, “You know, I’m feeling a little emotionally neglected today. I think I’ll talk my brain into coming up with a fake illness so people will take notice of me. Then we’ll collectively talk ourselves into having painful joints and sharp pains that travel around our bodies and minds, numbing fatigue, spots that make us want to scream when touched and skin that at times feels sunburned for days.”

When you suggest all I really need is exercise, a better diet or a hobby:

Well, I used to travel all up and down the streets and hills by my house. That is until I could barely walk for days afterwards. The exercise didn’t prevent my increasing FMS flare-ups, so more exercise surely won’t be the cure.

And in regards to diet, trust me, I am aware I’ve put on an extra 30 pounds over the years since the fibromyalgia really kicked in. I’m the one stuck inside this body 24/7, desperately wanting and hoping for things to change. Before you judge too harshly, my disease is a central nervous system disorder. “Central” meaning that from which everything else branches out from. It affects almost all aspects of my person. My body does not metabolize and lose weight like a healthy person’s does. In fact, I work hard to maintain the weight I’m at. I bet you dollars to donuts (no pun intended), I eat far less than you do and consume much healthier foods. Walk a mile in my shoes, my friend.

When you think I sound whiny or like a hypochondriac:

I rarely open up to people about my daily life with fibromyalgia. I assure you, I’m sharing a fraction of what it truly feels like to have FMS. I know people can get burned out by the unintentional negativity those of us with chronic illness can experience. This is why I only tell you a tiny bit, and more often than not, say absolutely nothing at all. You aren’t there to hear the cry of pain when my joints seize and I drop the full coffee cup all over the kitchen floor. You don’t see me intently trying to control my facial features so the pain I feel going up or down the stairs in the theater isn’t obvious to anyone looking. You don’t realize the times when the blood in my veins has been replaced with cement, but I get up and carry on with the routine of the day anyway.

When you want to show love and support to those with fibromyalgia or any “invisible” chronic illness:

We aren’t looking for anyone to feel sorry for us. What we really want more than anything is validation. Just to know someone believes our illness is real. That we aren’t faking or exaggerating our symptoms. We know we “look fine” on the outside, but if you could turn our inside out, you would see the true face of our condition.

Support us through your patience and presence. Remember this is not our chosen life, but the life we choose to persevere and thrive in, regardless of the unexpected path we must now walk on called “chronic illness.”

Uncertainty about Everything: 20 Rules for Living with Fibromyalgia

Published by:

Having lived with Fibromyalgia and the accompanying fatigue for more than 25 years now, I feel obligated to share my experiences as well.

While I would not call what has happened over that time “recovery”, I am more likely to call it “learning my body’s rules” and learning to abide by those rules.

What do I mean by “rules”? Well, here are the ones that rule my life:

1. Don’t do the same action over and over too many times.

That means, if I feel up to taking a walk, do not go nearly as far as I think I can, or I will pay dearly for it tomorrow and the next day and the third day, too.

By about the 4th day or so, I may be able to function more or less at my usual level. Consequently, I am unable to run a vacuum cleaner, mop a floor, clean house, wash dishes by hand… due to so much repetitious movement.

Even using a computer mouse causes issues with my neck and upper back.

2. Get enough sleep.

How much is that? Whatever my body says it is. Some nights, 7-8 hours is sufficient. Other nights, 12-14 hours is what it takes.

At least once a week (usually on Friday night into Saturday) I sleep at least 12 hours. When I am having a “bad” day I may sleep up to 20 hours… but that isn’t a typical situation.

3. Take meds and supplements without fail.

There are numerous bizarre effects that show up when I miss them. Bizarre even by fibromyalgia standards.

4. Do not wear tight clothes or belts.

Unless I want to have severe pain in my middle… for the duration of the time that I wear them, plus about another day or so. It can also lead to nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, though not always.

5. Avoid new chemicals (including new medications).

It seems anything new causes either an allergic reaction or a fibromyalgia flare up.

6. Wear shoes that are flat with a wide toe box.

Change what shoes I wear at least every day or so.

7. No pantyhose (see #4).

Avoid socks that are tight around the top. I have found that diabetic socks have tops that are not as tight as “normal” socks, but they still stay put.

8. Wear underpants that are hip huggers or bikini panties…not briefs.

9. If wearing slacks, do not wear anything with an elastic waist.

It must have a plain waistband that is actually too loose in order to be able to sit in them comfortably.

10. When my skins hurts or feels strange, I should wear clothes that barely touch anywhere on my body…

Probably a loose-fitting dress. Avoid any “extras” like jewelry, scarves, etc.

11. No jewelry around my neck or wrists.

Light-weight earrings for pierced ears only. Nothing heavy or too dangly.

12. Wear sunglasses.

Light of any kind is very painful… especially if on the verge of or in the middle of a flare-up.

13. Have dimmer switches in every room of the house. See #12.

14. Avoid clothes that are uncomfortable.

Bras, tags on the inside that irritate, etc. These little things add unnecessary stress to daily living. Can be the “final straw” that pushes me across the line to a flare up.

15. Learn and respect the early signals of an impending flare-up.

When you recognize what is happening, take life very easy until the symptoms let up again. Plus at least one or two days.

16. Find what works and stick with it.

My chiropractors and I are like family after all these years. They know that when I call and say I need to be seen, that tomorrow is not what I mean. They have helped me through so many situations and kept me able to function at work for all these years with minimal loss of work time. I cannot say enough good things about my chiropractic care.

At one point, I had an awesome massage therapist who was helping me immensely. Unfortunately, he and his family moved across the country, far, far away. I have not been able to find another massage therapist who is able to achieve the same results. I so wish he and his family would move back here!

17. Reduce stress in your life.

There is good stress and there is bad stress. Either kind requires my body to respond.

Some stressors are out of my control, e.g., weather changes, dramatic temperature changes, pollen count, changes in the workplace environment, my kids getting married three weeks apart, the birth of grandbabies, my children’s growing pains and crises, etc.

Other stressors are completely in my control, e.g., sending Christmas cards, throwing parties, attending parties, shopping, going to bed late, traveling long distances by car, etc.

Find what can be eliminated (sending Christmas cards) and eliminate those things. Avoid or reduce exposure to as many of the remaining ones as possible.

18. Find something that you can do that you truly enjoy.

I love watching movies and certain television shows. I can watch old movies and reruns of “NCIS” and “Charmed” for hours… and sometimes I do. I love to read, but can no longer hold a book for long periods. Thus, I have discovered audiobooks.

19. Not every symptom is always fibromyalgia.

It is important to make sure that any new ache or pain is not something else before I just chalk it up to a new fibromyalgia symptom.

Fractures in the small bones of the foot may or may not cause severe enough localized pain for me to think it is truly broken. However, three times in my life that was what it was.

Abdominal pain is not always fibromyalgia either. Once it was thought to be my gall bladder. After that was removed and the pain stayed, they did a cardiac workup and then a full GI work up. It is now a year later, and the pain still comes and goes. My doctors do not think it is “typical fibromyalgia” pain. They want it to go away or they want to know why it is there.

Most of my headaches originate in my neck and back, or from eye strain, not fibromyalgia.

It is important to know one from the other. If it can be “fixed”, fix it. Do not suffer needlessly.

20. Stay well hydrated.

I have noticed that if I “am a quart low” on water, my joints hurt more, I have more stiffness and achiness. When I drink lots of pure water (not tea, coffee, or soft drinks), I sleep better, I rest better, I am not as stiff and sore upon awakening, and I function better throughout the day.

Fibromyalgia is thought to affect up to a million Britons, commonly women over 40, and experts have likened the debilitating sensations to ‘death by a thousand needles’ ..

Published by:

It is a chronic condition that renders sufferers so sensitive that even the lightest touch triggers waves of excruciating pain. Fibromyalgia is thought to affect up to a million Britons, commonly women over 40, and experts have likened the debilitating sensations to ‘death by a thousand needles’.

Other symptoms include lack of concentration, memory loss, headaches and muscle stiffness. And for a long time there was little doctors could do to help quell the agony.

Yet today, with the help of sophisticated scanning techniques, pain specialists have been able to pinpoint the parts of the brain responsible for the condition.

Using a combination of psychotherapy and medicines more commonly used to treat depression and epilepsy, many sufferers are able to find relief.

‘Patients with fibromyalgia typically have what we call tender points,’ says Dr Ernest Choy, consultant rheumatologist at King’s College Hospital in London.

‘There are 18 sites throughout the body – in the neck, back, arms and legs – where, with light pressure, they experience pain, when a normal individual wouldn’t.

As well as pain, patients usually complain of a degree of fatigue and poor sleep quality. Depression and chronic pain often go hand-in-hand – it’s so hard to cope with such grinding discomfort every single day.’

There is no specific test for fibromyalgia so it is often diagnosed once other conditions, including chronic fatigue syndrome and rheumatoid arthritis, have been ruled out.

The patient will have suffered widespread pain for three months on both sides of the body, above and below the waist, as well as pain in at least 11 of the 18 known tender points when pressed.

‘Unfortunately, fibromyalgia isn’t well understood by many clinicians because pain is often a very subjective symptom,’ says Dr Choy.

‘According to a European survey, it takes approximately 18 months to two years to get a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. There are still a lot of clinicians who don’t even know about it.’

The exact cause of the condition isn’t known but, according to Dr Choy, research has highlighted that it is likely to be due to a problem with how the nervous system handles pain.

‘When a normal individual experiences pain, there is what we call a coping process in  the brain that manages it,’ he explains.‘In some patients with fibromyalgia, that process isn’t working properly so their threshold for experiencing pain is much lower.

‘Recent advances in assessing the way the brain works, using functional magnetic resonance imaging [fMRI], have really changed our understanding of the disease.

‘It’s clear that the way the brains of people with fibromyalgia process pain is very different from normal individuals.’

There are certain risk factors for developing the condition.

 ‘My symptoms started almost six years ago, with my joints suddenly swelling and feeling very painful’

‘There is evidence to show that people who have physical or psychological stress are more prone to developing fibromyalgia,’ says Dr Choy.

‘In some individuals it may be that they sleep very poorly, while in others it may be that they have other illnesses, such as depression.’

There is no cure, but treatments can help ease symptoms. Dr Choy explains: ‘The aim of treatment is to help patients cope with their condition.

In most patients, we use a combination of non-drug-based treatments, as well as medications.

‘Exercise can be helpful. Although many patients get worsening of their pain when they start, if they build up exercise gradually, they’ll get long-term benefits.

‘Taking warm baths or exercising in warm water will also help alleviate the pain and tiredness. Cognitive behavioural therapy, a kind of pyschotherapy, can help improve patients’ ability to handle the pain.

‘Aside from that, some simple painkillers can help, and we often prescribe antidepressants mainly because the chemical substances in the brain that control the processing of pain are also the same as those that cause depression.

‘These are given at much lower doses than are used to treat depression, though. Anti-epilepsy drugs have also been shown to be effective. These work on readjusting the nervous system and reducing sensitivity to light pressure.’

One sufferer, Nicki Southwell, 53, runs a fibromyalgia support group. Nicki, who lives in Carlisle with her husband Merlin, 51, a teacher, says: ‘My symptoms started almost six years ago, with my joints suddenly swelling and feeling very painful.

‘It got so bad I couldn’t climb the stairs. I was eventually diagnosed early last year, though no one knows what caused it. In the meantime, I had to stop work as a carer.

‘And although I’m usually very organised, suddenly I couldn’t find my diary or manage the housework. I felt totally out of control and I hated that. Along the way I’ve suffered with depression too, but I don’t know if that’s because of the fibromyalgia.’

More than a year on from her diagnosis, Nicki sleeps normally but wakes with aching, stabbing pains – mainly in her back and legs. Her short-term memory is also still poor so she makes lists.

‘I take painkillers and I use a Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation [TENS] machine for pain relief, which delivers electrical impulses to the body,’ she says. ‘I also did an NHS hydrotherapy course, which involved exercising in warm water and was brilliant.

‘I know lifestyle changes are key, so I’m going to try swimming, t’ai chi – anything. I still have bad days but things are getting better.

‘My message to other sufferers would be to persevere for diagnosis and treatment. Don’t give up hope.’

Dr Choy says: ‘What works for one patient might not for another. It is important to remember there are treatments already available that can help ease symptoms. I think the future is looking bright for patients with fibromyalgia.’

What is fibromyalgia? The painful reality of life with FM

Published by:

Fibromyalgia causes sufferers pain
Fibromyalgia causes sufferers pain

Last week, I wrote about fibromyalgia (FM) and I have benefited greatly from feedback sent to me by FM sufferers – there are 1.75million in the UK, some of whom have had fibromyalgia for 30 years.

I have spoken to quite a few, who have helped me understand their personal experience of this disabling condition and, as a result, I wish to increase public awareness of what it’s like to live with.

I had written that the majority of sufferers make a full recovery and I’m sorry if this caused distress.

The experience of the sufferers who contacted me is that people with FM rarely recover, if ever.

I’m indebted to Louise Day, a sufferer, who has drawn up a short quote to help people understand FM.

“FM is a common and complex chronic pain disorder that affects people physically, mentally and socially.

Fibromyalgia is characterized by chronic widespread pain, multiple tender points, abnormal pain processing, sleep disturbances, fatigue and often psychological distress. For those with severe symptoms, fibromyalgia can be extremely debilitating and interfere with basic daily activities.”

I’d like to pick up on one of Louise’s points – the pain. It can be unpredictable, come on out of the blue, strike anywhere and be severe enough to stop you in your tracks. The skin and various points on the body can be hypersensitive to touch. This extraordinary sensitivity to pressure is the basis of the Pressure Point Test, which doctors use to confirm the diagnosis of FM.

So whereas when someone presses our skin we feel a dull ache, a fibromyalgia sufferer feels an excruciating pain.

This hypersensitivity extends to sounds that can be intolerable. I recognise this as a feature of migraine, which I suffer, and a hypersensitivity to movement, which, in common with FM sufferers, makes me vomit when I have a migraine.

One sufferer I spoke to described the Spoon Theory as a metaphor for FM. It was described by Christine Miserandino when she was floundering to answer a question from a girlfriend about what it was like to live with her lupus (an autoimmune disease that affects the skin, joints and many other vital organs).

She was trying to find the right words and, as she was in a diner at the time, she grabbed a handful of spoons and gave them to her friend. She explained that healthy people have a never-ending supply of spoons, sick people don’t. She started to take away the spoons from her friend, each one representing a daily task and she quickly ran out of spoons.

That’s what FM is like – each daily task costs you a “spoon”. A difficult one may cost two. You may run out of spoons before the day has ended. You’re too tired to eat. You go without supper and crawl into bed.

Fibromyalgia in numbers

1,750,000

sufferers in UK

There were common themes to the stories I’ve heard. Most sufferers rely on a cocktail of drugs to control pain and get through the day; many mention the “fibro fog” when the brain goes blank and remembering and thinking are impossible; most sufferers believe that it takes a rheumatologist or a sympathetic doctor to confirm the diagnosis; pain clinics are a mainstay for many to help manage the pain and learn coping mechanisms; the Pressure Point Test is diagnostic of FM; many sufferers find acupuncture helps.

Do we know what’s going on? Professor Ernest Choy of Cardiff University Institute of Infection and Immunology describes FM as an abnormal pain threshold linked to sleep disorders. He states there can be a family history of FM and rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and IBS can be linked to it. Restless Legs is common.

Everybody’s FM is individual to them but chronic pain is common to all.

Professor Choy feels there’s a fault in the central nervous system and how the brain processes pain signals. Triggers are illness, trauma, car accident, stress of any kind, but FM is not a psychological illness, though depression is a common feature.

He believes keeping a symptoms diary can be helpful. He also says that while “it may seem counterintuitive to recommend exercise to someone in pain and exhausted, it’s very important. Pain leads to weakened muscle, which requires more effort to move, increasing the pain – a vicious circle.” (see healthymagazine.co.uk, August 2014)

If you type “FM recovery” into a search engine there are pages of personal anecdotes describing how people have overcome FM, including lifestyle changes, eating healthy food, exercise, hypnotherapy, CBT.

Many admittedly anecdotal stories have one thing in common – staying in the present, dealing with the symptoms in the here and now, listening to the body rather than the brain.

One approach I’ve come across is Reverse Therapy (RT) developed by Dr John Eaton and used in ME, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and FM. RT is an educational process that teaches people to identify triggers that prompt the body to create distress signals in the form of symptoms, such as fatigue and unexplained pain.

It’s symptom focused, dealing with symptoms in the moment. This reminds me of mindfulness, which research has shown to benefit brain function. I mention it because some FM sufferers may want to try it. There are practitioners throughout the UK. I’ve discovered there are many FM support groups around the country and I would advise everyone with FM to contact one in their area

A origem da Fibromialgia é uma alteração no Sistema Nervoso Central. Novo estudo confirma!

Published by:

O Sistema Nervoso Central tem sido confirmado como a”origem da Fibromialgia”, tal como apareceu no National Pain Report em Maio (pode ler aqui:
E agora, um novo estudo encontrou ainda mais coisas.
Um estudo alemão publicado esta semana (Outubro de 2015) na BMC Neurology investigou o envolvimento do Sistema Nervoso Central em pacientes com Fibromialgia, foi feito a partir de um exame de imagem ao Sistema NervosoCentral o functional near infraredspectroscopy (fNIRS) – uma tecnologia de neuro-imagem que oferece um exame não invasivo, seguro e de baixo custo, de maneira a monitorizar a atividade do cérebro.

O que os investigadores descobriram é importante para a própria compreensão desta doença dolorosa: o processamento do Sistema NervosoCentral em pessoas com Fibromialgia é fundamentalmente alterado, E, há uma distinção clara entre Fibromialgia e depressão major.

Assim, embora possa ser da sua cabeça, certamente não é tudo na sua cabeça! E, Fibromialgia NÃO é depressão, embora as duas condições podem estar presentes em conjunto.

Imagem

Sistema Nervoso Central
“Com base em dados da ressonância magnética funcional(fMRI)  (tecnologia de imagem diferente do que fNIRS), a hipótese de que a dor associada à activação cortical em pacientes com FM é mais forte e tem uma distribuição espacial mais ampla em comparação com os controles que podem ser detectados com fNIRS,”escreveram os investigadores. “Para testar esta hipótese, foi realizado o fNIRS sob estímulo doloroso em grupos de pacientes com Fibromialgia, Depressão major unipolar, sem dor, e controles saudáveis.”

“O nosso estudo contribui para a crescente evidência de uma ativação cerebral aumentada com a estimulação dolorosa como um contribuinte para a dor na Fibromialgia“, disseram os investigadores. “Além disso,as diferenças claras na activação cortical durante uma tarefa cognitiva pode ser observada entre os pacientes que sofrem de Fibromialgia e depressão major.”

Os destaques do novo estudo incluem:

  • Os pacientes com Fibromialgia sentem o limiar dador de pressão antes e sentem dor mais intensamente.
  • Pacientes com Fibromialgia mostram ativação cerebral bilateral com a estimulação dolorosa unilateral
  • O limiar de estimulação da dor induz a ativação cerebral apenas em pacientes com Fibromialgia
  • O desempenho cognitivo não é diferente entre pacientes com Fibromialgia e controles, enquanto a ativação pré-frontal é diferente entre pacientes com Fibromialgia e depressão
  • Pacientes com Fibromialgia têm a ativação cortical inferior melhor no desempenho do VFT do que aqueles com alta ativação cortical

Os autores concluíram, “A maior contribuição do nosso estudo exploratório é que o fNIRS, é uma nova técnica de imagem fácil de aplicar, sem efeitos colaterais, é adequado para investigar atividade cortical associada à dor. Além disso, os pacientes com Fibromialgia mostram um padrão de activação após estimulação cortical dolorosa que é distinto de controlos saudáveis e em especial a partir de doentes com depressão. Isso reforça a noção de que a Fibromialgia é uma entidade independente, em vez de ser uma mera variante da depressão”.

Estes novos resultados da investigação mostram um entusiasmante avanço para uma melhor compreensão da Fibromialgia, bem como a sua nítida diferença de outras patologias, muitas vezes é confundida a depressão.

100 symptoms of Fibromyalgia I Hope My Friends Don’t Know

Published by:

My symptoms are highlighted in red. I was floored after finding this list. I thought I knew everything there was to know about it.

Please share it with anyone else you know who suffers with Fibromyalgia, or think they might.

  • Fatigue, made worse by physical exertion or stress
  • Activity level decreased to less than 50% of pre-illness activity level
  • Recurrent flu-like illness
  • Sore throat
  • Hoarseness
  • Tender or swollen lymph nodes (glands), especially in neck and underarms
  • Shortness of breath (air hunger) with little or no exertion
  • Frequent sighing
  • Tremor or trembling
  • Severe nasal allergies (new allergies or worsening of previous allergies)
  • Cough
  • Night sweats
  • Low-grade fevers
  • Feeling cold often
  • Feeling hot often
  • Cold extremities (hands and feet)
  • Low body temperature (below 97.6)
  • Low blood pressure (below 110/70)
  • Heart palpitations
  • Dryness of eyes and/or mouth
  • Increased thirst
  • Symptoms worsened by temperature changes
  • Symptoms worsened by air travel
  • Symptoms worsened by stress
  • Headache
  • Tender points or trigger points
  • Muscle pain and aches
  • Muscle twitching
  • Muscle weakness
  • Paralysis or severe weakness of an arm or leg
  • Joint pain
  • TMJ syndrome
  • Chest pain
  • Lightheaded; feeling “spaced out”
  • Inability to think clearly (“brain fog”)
  • Seizures
  • Seizure-like episodes
  • Syncope (fainting) or blackouts
  • Sensation that you might faint
  • Vertigo or dizziness
  • Numbness or tingling sensations
  • Tinnitus (ringing in one or both ears)
  • Photophobia (sensitivity to light)
  • Noise intolerance
  • Feeling spatially disoriented
  • Dysequilibrium (balance difficulty)
  • Staggering gait (clumsy walking; bumping into things)
  • Dropping things frequently
  • Difficulty judging distances (e.g. when driving; placing objects on surfaces)
  • “Not quite seeing” what you are looking at
  • Hypersomnia (excessive sleeping)
  • Sleep disturbance: unrefreshing or non-restorative sleep
  • Sleep disturbance: difficulty falling asleep
  • Sleep disturbance: difficulty staying asleep (frequent awakenings)
  • Sleep disturbance: vivid or disturbing dreams or nightmares
  • Altered sleep/wake schedule (alertness/energy best late at night)
  • Depressed mood
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Suicide attempts
  • Feeling worthless
  • Frequent crying
  • Feeling helpless and/or hopeless
  • Inability to enjoy previously enjoyed activities
  • Increased appetite
  • Decreased appetite
  • Anxiety or fear when there is no obvious cause
  • Panic attacks
  • Irritability; overreaction
  • Rage attacks: anger outbursts with little or no cause
  • Abrupt, unpredictable mood swings
  • Phobias (irrational fears)
  • Personality changes
  • Eye pain
  • Changes in visual acuity (frequent changes in ability to see well)
  • Difficulty with accommodation (switching focus from one thing to another)
  • Blind spots in vision
  • Sensitivities to medications (unable to tolerate “normal” dosage)
  • Sensitivities to odors (e.g., cleaning products, exhaust fumes, colognes, hair sprays)
  • Sensitivities to foods
  • Painful urination or bladder pain
  • Alcohol intolerance
  • Frequent urination
  • Alteration of taste, smell, and/or hearing
  • Prostate pain
  • Impotence
  • Endometriosis
  • Worsening of premenstrual syndrome (PMS)
  • Decreased libido (sex drive)
  • Hair loss
  • Mitral valve prolapse
  • Cancer
  • Dental problems
  • Periodontal (gum) disease
  • Aphthous ulcers (canker sores)
  • Stomach ache; abdominal cramps
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Esophageal reflux (heartburn)
  • Frequent diarrhea
  • Frequent constipation
  • Bloating; intestinal gas
  • Decreased appetite
  • Increased appetite
  • Food cravings
  • Weight gain
  • Weight loss
  • Difficulty with simple calculations (e.g., balancing checkbook)
  • Word-finding difficulty
  • Using the wrong word
  • Difficulty expressing ideas in words
  • Difficulty moving your mouth to speak
  • Slowed speech
  • Stuttering; stammering
  • Impaired ability to concentrate
  • Easily distracted during a task
  • Difficulty paying attention
  • Difficulty following a conversation when background noise is present
  • Losing your train of thought in the middle of a sentence
  • Difficulty putting tasks or things in proper sequence
  • Losing track in the middle of a task (remembering what to do next)
  • Difficulty with short-term memory
  • Difficulty with long-term memory
  • Forgetting how to do routine things
  • Difficulty understanding what you read
  • Switching left and right
  • Transposition (reversal) of numbers, words and/or letters when you speak
  • Transposition (reversal) of numbers, words and/or letters when you write
  • Difficulty remembering names of objects
  • Difficulty remembering names of people
  • Difficulty recognizing faces
  • Difficulty following simple written instructions
  • Difficulty following complicated written instructions
  • Difficulty following simple oral (spoken) instructions
  • Difficulty following complicated oral (spoken) instructions
  • Poor judgment
  • Difficulty making decisions
  • Difficulty integrating information (putting ideas together to form a complete picture or concept)
  • Difficulty following directions while driving
  • Becoming lost in familiar locations when driving
  • Feeling too disoriented to drive

Alcohol helps cut disability caused by chronic pain from conditions like fibromyalgia say scientists

Published by:

Reseachers found that people who drank the equivalent of two pints of beer a day were better off than those who did not touch a drop

Consuming alcohol regularly reduces disability from chronic pain, experts say
Good health: Beer in moderation can soothe chronic pain

Two pints of beer a day could help to reduce disability in people with chronic pain, according to a new report yesterday.

In a study of 2,239 individuals with chronic widespread pain, the key feature of conditions such as fibromyalgia, those who regularly consumed alcohol had lower levels of disability than those who never or rarely drank.

Those who drank 21 to 35 units of alcohol per week were 67 per cent less likely than non-drinkers to experience disability.

“We cannot say that alcohol consumption causes less disability among people with chronic widespread pain.

“But the observed link warrants further investigation,” said Dr Gary Macfarlane, co-author of the Arthritis Care & Research study, who is professor of epidemiology atthe University of Aberdeen.

One unit of alcohol is a half pint of average strength beer/lager, one small glass of wine, or one single measure of spirits.

The study is the latest of many to suggest the benefits of alcohol, but health groups stress that this means drinking in moderation.

What is the treatment for fibromyalgia?

Published by:

There is no cure for fibromyalgia. Treatments aim to reduce symptoms as much as possible. Over the years a range of different treatments have been advocated with variable rates of success.

In 2007, a team of experts from 11 countries got together. They looked at the evidence (from research trials, review papers, etc) to determine which treatments should be recommended. Their recommendations were based on the results of research trials that had shown when a treatment had been beneficial to at least some people with fibromyalgia. They published a guideline called ‘EULAR evidence-based recommendations for the management of fibromyalgia syndrome’. A number of recommendations were made, and each is briefly mentioned below.

But note: each person is different and has different circumstances and degrees of symptoms. Also, not all treatments help in all cases, and not all treatments may be locally available. Your doctor is likely to discuss the pros and cons of the various options, and help you to decide which is the best option, or options, to try. Indeed, the guideline pointed out that optimal treatment requires a combination of treatments: treatment without medication and treatment with medication. Also, that treatment should be tailored to the individual according to pain intensity, function, and whether such features as depression, tiredness and sleep problems are also present.

Exercise

Exercise does not always help, but studies have shown that it improves symptoms in a good number of cases. If you are able, consider gradually building up to more and more exercise. Aerobic exercises which cause little pounding, such as walking, cycling and swimming, are thought to be the best form of exercise to improve symptoms. Stretching exercises such as yoga may also help. A doctor or physiotherapist can advise on a suitable programme for your particular circumstances. The aim is to exercise safely and without increased pain. A typical goal to aim for is to build up exercise to 4-5 times a week for at least 20 to 30 minutes a session. However, it may take months to build up to this level.

For example, one study published in the British Medical Journal describes how people with fibromyalgia were prescribed an exercise class – mostly walking on treadmills, or using exercise bicycles. Each person was encouraged to gradually increase the amount of exercise. When people first started they usually did two sessions of exercise per class lasting about six minutes. By three months some people had increased to doing two sessions in each class lasting 25 minutes. At three months, about 1 in 3 people who did the exercise programme rated themselves as much, or very much, better.

Note: pain and stiffness can get worse for a short while when you first start on an exercise programme.

Heated pool treatment with or without exercise

Heated pool treatment (balneotherapy) has been shown to improve symptoms in some cases. Some trials that looked into this included exercise in addition to heated pool treatment, and some did not. Both with and without exercise seemed to help in some cases.

For example, in one study of 42 fibromyalgia patients, half received 20 minutes’ bathing, once a day, five times per week, for three weeks (total of 15 sessions). Half did not have this treatment. The patients were evaluated by the number of tender points, and symptom severity (mainly pain). The evaluation was initially straight after the therapy, and then after six months. The results showed that, on average, the treated group had significantly less tenderness and pain – even six months after the treatment had finished.

Your doctor or physiotherapist may recommend a locally based heated hydrotherapy pool. However, if none is available, a heated swimming pool, or jacuzzi may suffice, or simply lying in a warm bath for 20 minutes per day may be of benefit.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)

CBT may be of benefit to some people with fibromyalgia. CBT is one type of talking treatment (psychotherapy). It is used as a treatment for various mental health and physical problems. Unlike other types of psychotherapy it does not involve ‘talking freely’, or dwelling on events in your past. CBT tends to deal with the here and now – how your current thoughts and behaviours are affecting you now. CBT is problem-focused and practical. CBT may actually help to ease pain symptoms. But it can also help you to take control of the extent to which pain, tiredness, or other symptoms interfere with your life.

Other therapies

The guideline recommended that other therapies may be useful, depending on the individual person’s needs. The therapies thought to be useful included relaxation, physiotherapy, acupuncture and psychological support.

Are there any medicines that can help improve fibromyalgia symptoms?

Painkillers
Painkillers such as paracetamol, anti-inflammatory painkillers such as ibuprofen, orstronger painkillers such as codeine may help to ease pain. However, they often do not work very well in fibromyalgia.

Tramadol is a stronger painkiller and is recommended if the above painkillers are not helpful. Research studies have shown the benefit of tramadol in people with fibromyalgia.

Very strong opiate painkillers such as morphine are not recommended. This is because fibromyalgia is a long-term condition. It is unwise to take strong opiates long-term, due to problems with medication dependence.

Antidepressants
An antidepressant medicine is a common treatment for fibromyalgia. Research studies have confirmed that antidepressants are often helpful for easing pain and improving overall function. They may also help with disturbed sleep. Although they are called antidepressants, they are not used in fibromyalgia to treat depression. Tricyclic antidepressants ease pain separately to their action on depression. Antidepressant medicines are used to treat various conditions apart from depression.

There are various antidepressants and your doctor will advise on one, if needed. A trial of 4-6 weeks is often advised, and continued if found to be helpful. Low doses are often used (compared to a dose that may be used to treat depression). However, if you have depression in addition to fibromyalgia, then a full-strength dose would be appropriate to treat both the pain of the fibromyalgia and the depression.

Other medicines
Medicines called pregabalin and gabapentin have been shown to help some people with fibromyalgia.

Other treatments

Some people try complementary or alternative treatments such as aromatherapy, massage, etc. There is little evidence that such treatments relieve the core symptoms of fibromyalgia. However, some people find that certain treatments help them to relax, feel less stressed, and feel better in themselves, which helps them to cope better with their condition.

Note: sleeping tablets are not often used, as they do not help with fibromyalgia, and can be addictive. See separate leaflet called Insomnia (Poor Sleep) which gives tips on getting a good night’s sleep and may be of benefit if you have difficulty sleeping.

Fibromyalgia does not shorten expected lifespan. The outcome is very variable. In some cases, symptoms ease or go after a few months. However, in many cases it is a persistent (chronic) condition which tends to wax and wane in severity. Quality of life can become affected.