Fibromyalgia Syndrome

What Is Fibromyalgia Syndrome?

Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FM) is a chronic pain disorder characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain and tenderness, fatigue, sleep disturbances, and difficulty in concentrating. The exact cause of FM is unknown, although a combination of genetic, environmental, psychological, and hormonal factors have been suggested. It has been suggested that FM may be triggered by infections, physical trauma, or emotional stress.

Symptoms of Fibromyalgia Syndrome

The most common symptoms of FM are widespread pain, fatigue, sleep disturbances, and difficulty in concentration. Other common symptoms include:

  • Muscle stiffness
  • Headaches
  • Depression
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Anxiety
  • Tingling or numbness in the hands and feet
  • Jaw and facial tenderness
  • Prolonged sensitivity to heat or cold

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia Syndrome

The diagnosis of FM is based on a person's medical history, physical examination, and other tests. It is important to note that there is no single diagnostic test for FM and diagnosis is based on the exclusion of other medical conditions. A physician may order tests such as aching point count-tender point examination, imaging scans, blood tests, and psychological tests to help confirm or rule out the diagnosis of FM.

Treating Fibromyalgia Syndrome

There is no specific treatment for FM and treatment goals are focused on symptom relief. The treatment plan should be tailored to each individual and may include a combination of medications, physical therapies, lifestyle changes, and stress-reduction techniques. In some cases, cognitive behavioral therapy and other forms of psychotherapy may be recommended.