Fibromyalgia is a condition characterized by widespread pain in muscles and ligaments. The fibromyalgia patients often have difficulty sleeping and feel chronic fatigue. Fibromyalgia has long been designated by various terms including diffuse idiopathic polyalgic syndrome (SPID), chronic muscular rheumatism (1901), psychogenic rheumatism (1960), fibrositis (1983), and soft tissue rheumatism.
Risks and origins of the syndrome
Fatigue is a very common complaint in the general population: up to 50% say tired (Pascal Cathébras functional disorders and somatization. How to deal with medically unexplained symptoms Masson. 2006).
Fibromyalgia, such as chronic fatigue syndrome (without pain), have long been regarded as psychosomatic or imaginary diseases. Fibromyalgia was nevertheless recognized in 1992 by the World Health Organization (WHO) and would cover 2-5% of the population, mostly affecting women between 30 and 50 years with a ratio of 4 females to 1 male. It begins abruptly, often in conditions of "stress".
Causes of Fibromyalgia
The exact cause of fibromyalgia is not identified. Psychosomatic origin is mentioned, with a number of factors such as stress, accidents or surgeries. Fibromyalgia is an abnormal pain response, which is increased.
Symptoms and signs of fibromyalgia
The "warning signs" may appear before the symptoms of fibromyalgia fatigue on exertion, aches, tingling, poor tolerance to hot / cold, sleep disorders.
Otherwise, Fibromyalgia is characterized by widespread pain associated with intense and chronic fatigue signs. Pain is the main symptom, affecting areas close to the spine (neck, shoulders, between the shoulders, shoulder blades, back ...). This pain can vary throughout the day depending on the stress and activity, but overall patients complain of having "hurt all over." Tender points are found by feeling the muscles. Fatigue or asthenia accompany these pains: difficulty standing, difficulty getting up in the morning ...
The psychological impact is very important, especially since sleep disorders prevent any recovery period. Anxiety or depression happen very quickly.
With what should we be confused fibromyalgia?
Algodystrophy is painful suffering members and follows trauma (fracture, dislocation, often plastered) in adults between 45 and 70 years. The joint becomes stiff non-mobilized and painful, with progressively dystrophy member, detectable on x-ray and bone scan.
Chronic fatigue syndrome is similar to fibromyalgia but no pain is present.
Finally, other diseases (adrenal insufficiency, depression, chronic arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, polymyositis ...) can be confused with fibromyalgia; additional tests will make the difference. No examination allows to directly ask the diagnosis of fibromyalgia. The tests performed are used to rule out other diseases that may give identical symptoms. The diagnosis of fibromyalgia is a diagnosis of exclusion.
Will it possible prevention of fibromyalgia?
The patient should take an active part in treatment.
Physical activity (walking, swimming ...) relieves pain and prevents muscle wasting. Warm-up, stretching or flexibility exercises are essential before starting the actual exercise.
Heat applied locally (hot shower) promotes relaxation of muscles.
Improving sleep can lessen the symptoms of the disease and any stress factor must be eliminated: behavioral therapies may be beneficial.
When to consult?
The impact of fibromyalgia is variable but could hinder personal and professional life An important factor in the treatment of fibromyalgia is early diagnosis. It suitable to act as soon as possible after the onset of symptoms.
What does the doctor?
The diagnosis of fibromyalgia is difficult; the diagnosis is often mentioned after months of pain and diagnostic wanderings. The American College of Rheumatology has established a score based on a questionnaire (duration of the disease, and many affected areas ...) that can help the doctor or rheumatologist to confirm the disease.
To eliminate other diseases, blood tests, x-rays or scans of the skeleton can be made and are normal in fibromyalgia.
No specific treatment exists; the treatment is to relieve pain and manage other symptoms. Group of drugs tricyclic and tetracyclic antidepressants are used as analgesics (against pain).
How to prepare for my next visit?
Keep a log of daily activities and the effect they provide is used to identify the factors that aggravate or relieve. This will help the doctor find ways to change the lifestyle to feel less tired and less stressed.
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