The main symptoms are pains presented in many parts of the body as well as tiredness . Many people develop some of the symptoms covered below but the severity varies from person to person.
Other symptoms present in patients with fibromyalgia:
The entire diagnostic process is dependent on finding tenderness in certain areas of the body. The increased sensitivity to mild or tender pressure may be seen in different parts of the body or all over the body . These are sites marked as generally fairly sensitive areas and they are also the easiest to check for the tenderness that is common with individuals suffering from fibromyalgia.
Examinations will not show any other abnormalities apart from areas of tenderness and there are no laboratory tests for confirming this condition. On the other hand, tests may be conducted in some cases so as to rule out conditions that post similar symptoms. For instance, blood tests may be used to rule oit an underactive thyroid and early cases of early arthritis.
There is no cure for fibromyalgia and treatments are often aimed at reducing symptoms as much as possible . Over the years, lots of treatment types have been advocated with each one offering varying degrees of success.
Regular exercise is one form of treatment without any medications while painkillers and antidepressants form the basis of medication based treatments.
According to long term follow up studies, fibromyalgia is chronic. However, the symptoms may wax and wane. The impact of fibromyalgia on daily activities including ability to do all daily tasks varies greatly amongst patients . The condition is generally as disabling as rheumatoid arthritis and there is no lid as to how long an individual will have to live with it. People with this condition face the risk of losing their jobs, possessions, etc.
The main causes of fibromyalgia remain unknown but many hypotheses have been postulated . Some of the suspected causes are as follows:
The diagnosis of this condition is largely subjective and therefore incidence and numbers should only be interpreted in this context .
The condition is seen in 20-30 individuals per 1000. It is spread evenly amongst individuals aged 18-70 years. But it is mostly prevalent in people within the 30-50 years age bracket.
Fibromyalgia occurs mostly in females and the ration to males is 9:1.
Till date, there has not been any conclusive evidence on the impact of genetics in fibromyalgia. However, first degree relatives of fibromyalgia have been noted to show an increased incidence of depression.
Fibromyalgia is seen mostly in people within the middle and upper socioeconomic classes. However, this may be down to the fact that most individuals in the lower class will rather sit out symptoms consistent with fibromyalgia due to poor access to care and general poverty.
Fibromyalgia is generally regarded as a disorder affecting the central pain processor and a syndrome affecting central sensitivity. Patients with this condition often have a diffuse problem of sensory volume control leaving them with a lower threshold for pain and relevant stimuli like noise, heat and strong odours .
Due to neurobiologic changes that affect the perception of pain or because of expectancy and hypervigilance, patients may have hypersensitivity. This may be related to certain psychological factors.
Even though the pathogenesis of fibromyalgia isn’t entirely understood, research has shown some immunoregulatory, biochemical and metabolic abnormalities. This has confirmed suspicions that fibromyalgia can no longer be regarded as a subjective pain condition.
No proven methods of prevention but exercise reduces the chances of suffering from it  .
Fibromyalgia is a chronic musculoskeletal disorder. It is a condition with a pathophysiology that is poorly understood and there is very few pathognomonic findings concerning it .
Fibromyalgia is characterised by widespread pain with very distinct tender points and morning stiffness. There have not been any evidence of inflammatory causes and the condition is equally associated with sleep disorders, fatigue and depression.
Treatment for the condition is symptom-based, multidisciplinary and in many cases often unsatisfactory.
In patients with Fibromyalgia the way the brain processes pain signals is affected amplifying any painful sensations.
The symptoms of fibromyalgia kick in following surgery, infection, significant psychological stress and also physical trauma. It also possible for the symptoms to accumulate over a period of time without any known causes.
Presently, there is no total cure for fibromyalgia but a combination of relevant medications will help control the symptoms. Exercise, stress reduction activities as well as relaxation can also help.