Unlike osteoarthritis which only impacts the joints, fibromyalgia pain is felt throughout the entire body. For some patients, it is deep and sharp; for others, it may be dull or aching. Muscles and tissues around the joints are tender and painful when touched or pressed.
In addition to pervasive pain that lasts for months, other symptoms of fibromyalgia include:
- Fatigue and disrupted sleep
- Depression and anxiety
- Headaches, including migraines
- Cognitive problems, such as poor concentration and memory
- There is no blood test for fibromyalgia, but other blood work may be ordered to rule out other conditions.
- A complete physical history will be taken, including history of infections, since some illnesses may trigger fibromyalgia. Information on previous physical or emotional trauma, such as an accident or injury, is also important since that may trigger fibromyalgia.
- Your National Spine & Pain Center physician will also conduct a thorough physical exam, including palpating your muscles and tender points to identify your pain trigger points.
The type and extent of treatment often depends on factors such as your age, activity level, overall health and severity of the condition.
- Medications such as over-the-counter pain relievers and anti-inflammatories are a good place to start. Prescription, non-narcotic pain relievers may be helpful, as may antidepressants that can address the anxiety and fatigue that can come with fibromyalgia. In addition, several new targeted medications for treating fibromyalgia are now available.
- Physical Therapy: Physical therapy, including aqua therapy, may help reduce inflammation and muscle tightness and improve strength and flexibility.
- Alternative Therapies: Some patients have found relief through acupuncture, massage therapy, yoga and tai chi.
- Counseling: Because fibromyalgia can lead to depression, mental health counseling can be helpful in developing coping skills for dealing with the pain and anxiety that accompanies fibromyalgia.
We're Here to Help get Your Life Back
Living with chronic pain caused from a Fibromyalgia is a daily struggle and finding relief can be challenging. We are here for you. Our highly skilled pain doctors get right to the source of your pain and will provide treatment tailored to your needs. Stop letting pain run your life and request an appointment today.