Fibromyalgia is a very common chronic pain syndrome that mainly affects women between the ages of 20 and 50. The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal Diseases estimates that five million people in the United States have fibromyalgia. Although it is very common, the cause of fibromyalgia is not yet clearly defined and the symptoms of fibromyalgia can be just as varied and complex.
A List of Fibromyalgia Symptoms
Fibromyalgia is diagnosed as a syndrome — a collection of signs, symptoms, and medical conditions — and not just by a marker. The three symptoms of fibromyalgia that most directly point to a diagnosis are: Mesothelioma law firm
- Generalized pain on both sides of the body, above and below the waist
- Cognitive difficulties
- However, fibromyalgia is a complex chronic pain syndrome that affects all aspects of a person’s life. This article will discuss all of these fibromyalgia symptoms in more detail, as well as specific fibromyalgia symptoms in women. The complete list of fibromyalgia symptoms varies from patient to patient, but may include any of the following 27 fibromyalgia symptoms:
- Generalized muscle pain
- Muscle spasms
- Headaches or migraines
- Rebound pain
- irritable bowel syndrome
- Excessive gas
- painful bladder syndrome
- Increased pain sensitivity
- Feelings of pines and needles
- Increased overall sensitivity to cold and touch
- Inability to concentrate or “fibro-fog”
- Balance and coordination problems
- nerve energy
- emotional sensitivity
- Increased stress response
- sleep disorders
- joint stiffness
- Menstrual pain or changes
- Increased risk of other health problems
- Knowing these symptoms and whether they affect them can help with diagnosis. It takes years for the average person to be diagnosed. This is because the symptoms of fibromyalgia overlap with many other disorders. The following video gives a little more information about this pain syndrome.
- Symptoms of Pain Pain is one of the most common symptoms of fibromyalgia and is an essential part of any diagnosis. But, as EverydayHealth explains:Fibromyalgia symptoms can vary in intensity and get better or worse over time. Factors such as stress, weather changes, too much or too little physical exercise, and insufficient or insufficient rest can influence the severity of your symptoms. This means that an activity that made you suffer one day might be fine the next, and vice versa. Still, here’s how fibromyalgia pain symptoms can affect your life. 1. Generalized muscle painThe symptom that fibromyalgia is known for is most definitely chronic pain throughout the body. For fibromyalgia to be diagnosed, the pain must appear on both sides of the body, above and below the waist. The pain can travel to all other parts of your body and the pain intensity can vary. Fibromyalgia also tends to wax and wane, so pain can vary from day to day and even within the same day. The National Fibromyalgia and Chronic Pain Association reports that the following effects could all affect pain levels:
- Cold/wet weather
- Non-restorative sleep
- Physical and mental fatigue
- Excessive physical activity
- Physical inactivity
- Most patients describe pain as stiffness or pain that begins in specific areas. Fibromyalgia tends to start in the neck and shoulder area and spread to the rest of the body from there. It is also common for pain to be felt originating in the joints, even if inflammation or swelling is not present. Tender points are also common and usually generate sharp pain when pressure is exerted. Mesothelioma Law Firm
- To be diagnosed as a chronic condition, this pain must be present for at least three months and not resolve or recur.
2. Muscle spasms Muscle spasms can be a painful fibrotic symptom or just irritation as the muscle tenses and loosens on its own. It can interfere with sleep and daily activity.
3. Headaches or migraines
Headaches are a common symptom of fibromyalgia. Some patients even experience extreme migraine pain. The intense pressure or throbbing caused by these migraines can extend further into the body, down to the neck, shoulders and upper back. These headaches are often triggered by environmental factors such as:
- Sparkling light
- Loud sounds
- Strong smells
These headaches can last for several days and can be severe enough to disrupt sleep.
4. Rebound pain
When fibromyalgia patients feel no pain, their first instinct may be to get up and get things done. They can clean their house, meet friends for lunch, and then go hiking in the afternoon with their children. While all of these things are wonderful, the result of this increased activity can be even more severe pain later that night or the next day.
Doctors diagnose fibromyalgia by 18 pain points on the body. These are symmetrical points located above and below the waist. People with fibromyalgia may feel increased tenderness in these areas when a flare-up is imminent, or they may feel these tender points almost all the time. Mesothelioma Law Firm
Symptoms of Gastrointestinal Fibromyalgia
Many fibromyalgia patients also suffer from gastrointestinal problems.
6. Irritable Bowel Syndrome
Fibromyalgia and irritable bowel syndrome are closely related, with pain and stiffness being common issues with both. It is quite common for a person to have both of these disorders at the same time. IBS is another chronic pain that can lead to:
- Severe abdominal pain
The pain can be so severe that a fibromyalgia patient is sick in the stomach. This can lead to a change in diet which can lead to other symptoms.
Some people with IBS present with constipation as the main manifestation of this syndrome.
9. excessive gas
Excess gas can be a symptom of IBS or can result from changes in diet due to nausea or other causes.
For fibromyalgia patients who also suffer from IBS, if they do not suffer from constipation or excessive gas, they may find that their main symptom of fibromyalgia is diarrhea.
11. Painful bladder syndrome
The Mayo Clinic reports that fibro often coexists with other conditions, such as interstitial cystitis or painful bladder syndrome.
Sensory Fibromyalgia Symptoms
One of the strangest effects of fibromyalgia is the distortion of the patient’s sensitivity to pain, cold, touch, or even sensory input such as smell.
12. Increased Pain Sensitivity
People with chronic pain experience brain changes that make their bodies more sensitive to pain over time. This is a common symptom of fibromyalgia.
13. Pins and needles
Any damage to the nerves can cause tingling in the hands and feet, often referred to as “tingling”. SpineHealth notes that:
“About 25% of fibromyalgia patients report ‘poor circulation’ or numbness and tingling that does not show a root pattern and usually involves the arms and hands. However, a physical exam reveals normal muscle strength and sensory testing, with no signs of inflammation or arthritis. ”
14. Increased Overall Sensitivity
Besides increased sensitivity to pain (which deserves its own attention), many fibromyalgia patients also report increased sensitivity to: Mesothelioma Law Firm
- To touch
- The smells
- loud noises
- Sparkling light
- certain foods
Fibromyalgia patients are sometimes so sensitive all over their bodies that the slightest touch can make them quiver with surprise or pain. Nerve endings are hyper-aware and sensitive to the slightest stimulation from the seams and tags of clothing.
But, due to an increased sensitivity to cold, fibromyalgia patients may find themselves reaching for a sweater on the sunniest days.
Cognitive Fibromyalgia Symptoms
The diagnosis of fibromyalgia tends to focus more on physical symptoms, such as pain and fatigue. This makes sense, as these are the easiest indicators to identify and measure. However, a number of mental and cognitive fibromyalgia symptoms resulting from this disorder can also have a significant impact on quality of life.
Fibromyalgia patients may forget the daily chores of where they put the keys to what they were supposed to have at the store. Memory loss and decreased verbal fluency are particularly serious symptoms of fibromyalgia. While memory loss is common with age, a study of cognitive function in fibromyalgia patients showed that people with fibromyalgia had the cognitive abilities and recall of a 20-year-old.
16. Inability to concentrate or “fibro-fog”
The most common symptom of mental fibromyalgia is what is known as fibro fog or brain fog. This includes many cognitive difficulties, such as:
- Become easily confused
- Lack of motivation
- Feeling “fuzzy” or “fuzzy”
- Difficulty concentrating for long periods
- Being unable to concentrate or pay attention
This fibro-fog is usually caused by overstimulation, high stress, lack of sleep, and certain medications. This fog can make it look like you are taking cold medicine. For many patients, this is one of the most frustrating everyday symptoms of fibromyalgia.
17. Balance and Coordination Problems
Many people with fibromyalgia also have difficulty standing or maintaining basic coordination. This could be due to fatigue, sure, but it’s also a separate symptom of this syndrome.
Between the lack of sleep that is often a symptom of fibromyalgia and the amount of exertion even the smallest task requires during a flare-up, fibromyalgia patients can be deeply fatigued. Many people with fibromyalgia suffer from sleep disturbances. The constant pain itself can be exhausting. Those with fibro tend to report that they have trouble getting restful sleep and feel tired upon waking. Exhaustion is so synonymous with fibro that some experts believe that without sleep disturbances and chronic fatigue, it cannot be considered a true case of fibromyalgia.
Fibro sufferers have a way of describing this. They call themselves ‘spoonies’, comparing the amount of energy they have each day versus the number of spoons they have. If a fibromyalgia patient has ten scoops for a day and uses eight to get ready for labor, he knows he has to adjust to the day’s rest.
Mood Disorders Related to Fibromyalgia
If you have fibromyalgia, you are also more likely to suffer from mood disorders.
As with all chronic pain patients, people with fibromyalgia have an increased risk of developing depression as a direct result of their condition. Research has shown that people diagnosed with fibro are three times more likely to suffer from depression than those without it. Depression is one of the most important symptoms to identify early on as it can be difficult to self-identify. It may also cause other negative effects that may exacerbate other symptoms of fibromyalgia, such as: Mesothelioma Law Firm
- Loss of interest in activities
- Decreased energy
- Persistent sadness or anxiety
In more advanced cases, it can lead to feelings of worthlessness and thoughts of death. This can be exacerbated by their inability to attend treatment regularly. Also, when depression is associated with a chronic pain condition, it will usually not improve unless the depression is also treated.
20. nervous energy
When fibromyalgia patients are feeling good, they can be almost frantic in their desire to do things. Whether it’s playing with their children or simply doing household chores without pain, it can lead to rebound pain later on.
Waiting for the next painful flare-up can lead to a constant buzz of anxiety. In some patients, this anxiety may begin to turn into a fear of leaving the house, just in case an outbreak should begin. It can also result in a panic attack if symptoms of fibro-epidemic suddenly occur away from home.
22. emotional sensitivity
As you might expect, suffering from chronic pain can cause the sufferer to feel irritable and short-lived in anger. However, for fibro patients, it’s more than that.
Many patients reported that their emotional reactions were much stronger and they had less control over how they expressed them. Irritability is one of the most common manifestations of this and this sensitivity can increase considerably with lack of sleep. This sensitivity is true for both negative and positive emotions.
Mood swings can also have a big impact on the daily lives of people with fibromyalgia. Many people with fibromyalgia can be happy or angry in a minute or less. Very often, sudden mood swings are inexplicable, which is why they can have such a devastating effect on both professional and personal life.