Essex County College
November 21, 2014
What is fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is a disorder that is characterized by a widespread of musculoskeletal pain that is accompanied by fatigue, sleep, memory and mood issues. Fibromyalgia amplifies painful sensations by affecting the way your brain processes pain signals (Arnold). Fibromyalgia can affect the muscles and the soft tissue of the human body. This disorder can affect a lot in a person’s life. Symptoms of Fibromaylgia
There are many symptoms of fibromyalgia. Widespread pain is the pain that is described as a constant ache and that pain can last for many months. For pain to be widespread it must happen on both sides of the body and above and below the waist (DL). Fatigue is another symptom, in which sleep in interrupted by the pain that these people suffer from. Since they don’t get an ample amount of sleep they tend to be extremely fatigued. Cognitive difficulties are another symptom. Some people with fibromyalgia cannot pay attention, cannot stay awake or concentrate sometimes throughout their day. Other symptoms can be depression, headaches and cramping.
Fibromyalgia and Sleep
Fibromyalgia can cause a person to go through many sleeping problems. For example, insomnia is a disorder that is commonly known with many people suffering from fibromyalgia. Insomnia is a sleep disorder that can be characterized by difficulty falling or staying asleep. Also one can have other sleeping disorders such as restless leg syndrome and sleep apnea. Usually people with fibromyalgia talk about waking really exhausted with no type of energy in their body, some actually fall asleep during the day due to the lack of sleep they may get from being up all night from the pain of their disorder. Pain or other symptoms of fibromyalgia such as depression and anxiety can also contribute to sleep problems (Arnold).
Fibromyalgia and Fatigue
People suffering from fibromyalgia can go through some serious fatigue. Many describe the fatigue as crippling, exhausting and flu-like. Imagine going through flu-like fatigue without even having the flu that is and seems very serious. Many also say that even after hours of getting out of bed they still feel extreme fatigue. Fatigue like this can cause mood disturbances, anxiety, and depression. Most importantly it can develop into chronic fatigue syndrome. Chronic fatigue syndrome is being so tired that you cannot complete daily errands or activities. People with fibromyalgia would describe fatigue as a “brain fatigue” or a “fibro fog” (Reid). Causes of Fibromyalgia
The causes for fibromyalgia are unknown, but doctors think that many factors may contribute to the disorder. Genetics may be a factor, because the disorder tends to run in families. Infection can be a factor because some illnesses can act as a trigger for this disorder. Physical emotion trauma such as post traumatic stress disorder has been linked to fibromyalgia. Also traumatic accidents like car accidents can cause the disorder as well. Treatments of Fibromyalgia
Although there is not one specific treatment that can heal one from fibromyalgia, there are different treatments that can be done to hinder the symptoms. Exercise can help ease the fatigue, pain and sleeping disorders that people may go through. Over the counter pain relievers like ibuprofen, naproxen sodium and acetaminophen can help with the pain (LJ). Therapy can relieve stress. 5 million Americans, 18 and over are estimated to be suffering from fibromyalgia. 90 percent happen to be women. Scientists and researchers are trying to find a definite cause to this disorder to aid those who suffer from this. Scientists have high hopes that one day they can come to a conclusion to their research.
Arnold, LM. Mayo Clinic. 19 August 2013. Document.
DL, Goldenberg. Clinical manifestations and diagnosis of fibromyalgia in adults. . August 2013. LJ,...
Cited: Arnold, LM. Mayo Clinic. 19 August 2013. Document.
DL, Goldenberg. Clinical manifestations and diagnosis of fibromyalgia in adults. . August 2013.
LJ, Crofford. Nature Reviews Rheumatology. 2010.
Reid, S. Clinical Evidence. 2012.
Please join StudyMode to read the full document