What is the Difference Between Inflammatory Arthritis and Fibromyalgia ?

Certain types of inflammatory arthritis and fibromyalgia are often confused because their symptoms mimic one another in early stages.

While fibromyalgia is considered an arthritis-related condition, it is not a true form of arthritis because it does not cause tissue inflammation nor does it damage joints or muscles. However some consider it a rheumatic condition because it can make the joints and surrounding tissues painful and sore to use. In general people with fibromyalgia have normal looking X-ray and blood tests results, and family and friends drive them mad by telling them they look fine. A person with arthritis will have abnormal test results and they may also be in visible pain, with swollen or deformed joints.

Distinguishing between the two to yield a proper diagnosis is important to ensure proper treatment. Both are chronic disorders earmarked by long-lasting pain.

Inflammatory Arthritis

There are several types of inflammatory arthritis which include:

  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • ankylosing spondylitis
  • lupus
  • psoriatic arthritis

Inflammatory arthritis leads to inflammation of the joints and surrounding tissues. Long-standing inflammatory arthritis can result in joint deformation and disability.

Typical Signs of Rheumatoid Arthritis/Osteoarthritis  Osteoarthritis

• Pain in affected joints, particularly after repetitive use.
• Stiffness, you may feel creaky first thing in the morning.
• Creaking joint noises, cracking and crunching sounds.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

• Reduced appetite.
• Feeling generally unwell.
• Fatigue.
• Swollen glands.
• General feeling of weakness.

Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia affects not only joints, but muscles, tendons, and other soft tissues in the elbows, hips, chest, knees, lower back, neck, and shoulders. Fibromyalgia can develop alone or with inflammatory arthritis.

Common Shared Symptoms

Both fibromyalgia and inflammatory arthritis sufferers have pain and stiffness in the morning. Other common symptoms shared by the two conditions include:

  • fatigue
  • sleep disturbances
  • limited range of motion
  • numbness or tingling

Typical Signs of Fibromyalgia

• Pain in specific points of the body called the fibromyalgia tender points.
• Flu like pain, primarily in the neck and shoulders.
• Depression/anger.
• Feeling anxious.
• Constant extreme fatigue.
• Chronic back pain.
• Bouts of constipation or diarrhea.
• Jaw or facial tenderness (90 percent experience this symptom).
• Headaches and migraines (up to 50 percent of cases).

Diagnosing Symptoms

Tests to distinguish fibromyalgia and inflammatory arthritis include X-rays, blood tests, and ultrasound. Besides inflammatory arthritis, fibromyalgia also shares common symptoms with several other conditions.

  • chronic fatigue syndrome
  • cancer
  • depression
  • HIV infection
  • hyperthyroidism
  • irritable bowel syndrome
  • Lyme disease

Gabapentin can be used to treat more than 30 diseases

Gabapentin is used with other medications to prevent and control seizures. It is also used to relieve nerve pain following shingles (a painful rash due to herpes zosterinfection) in adults. Gabapentin is known as an anticonvulsant or antiepileptic drug.

OTHER USES: This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by yourhealth care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.

Gabapentin may also be used to treat other nerve pain conditions (such as diabetic neuropathy, peripheral neuropathy, trigeminal neuralgia) and restless legs syndrome.

Gabapentin can also be used to treat following health conditions:

  • Alcohol Withdrawal
  • Anxiety
  • Benign Essential Tremor
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Burning Mouth Syndrome
  • Cluster-Tic Syndrome
  • Cough
  • Diabetic Peripheral Neuropathy
  • Epilepsy
  • Erythromelalgia
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Hiccups
  • Hot Flashes
  • Hyperhidrosis
  • Insomnia
  • Lhermitte’s Sign
  • Migraine
  • Nausea/Vomiting, Chemotherapy Induced
  • Neuropathic Pain
  • Occipital Neuralgia
  • Pain
  • Periodic Limb Movement Disorder
  • Peripheral Neuropathy
  • Postherpetic Neuralgia
  • Postmenopausal Symptoms
  • Pruritus
  • Pudendal Neuralgia
  • Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy Syndrome
  • Restless Legs Syndrome
  • Small Fiber Neuropathy
  • Spondylolisthesis
  • Syringomyelia
  • Transverse Myelitis
  • Trigeminal Neuralgia
  • Vulvodynia

Gabapentin for Fibromyalgia

The symptoms of fibromyalgia include widespread pain and tenderness along with other problems, including depression,difficulty sleeping, fatigue, and irritability. The symptoms can interfere with a person’s life at work and at home.

Because there is not a single, specific cause of fibromyalgia and the symptoms can vary from patient to patient, choosing an effective treatment can be challenging. Experts say the best, overall strategy includes medications and nondrug therapies, such as exercise, counseling, and stress relief.

The medications used to treat fibromyalgia includeantidepressants (amitriptyline, nortriptyline, fluoxetine, paroxetine, duloxetine, milnacipran), a few anti-seizure medications (gabapentin, pregabalin), and a muscle relaxant (cyclobenzaprine). But studies show that the benefits of these medications are generally small. There is no clear evidence that one drug is better than another, and all of them probably lose their benefit over time.

Each drug differs in the risks it poses to you. All antidepressants should be used with caution in those with a history of suicide attempt or who are at risk of suicide, especially in people 25 years old or younger. Amitriptyline, cyclobenzaprine, gabapentin, and pregabalin all cause increased sedation and should be used with caution in the elderly.

Taking into account the evidence of their effectiveness and safety as well as their price, we have chosen three Consumer Reports Best Buy Drugs as initial options to consider if you and your doctor have decided that a medication is appropriate for your fibromyalgia symptoms:

  • Generic amitriptyline
  • Generic gabapentin
  • Generic paroxetine-IR (immediate release)

Effective treatment options for Fibromyalgia

There are many options available to treat Fibromyalgia. It depends on patient condition as which treatment would work best for him/her. Let us have a look at some treatment options available for treating Fibromyalgia.

Allopathic

Allopathic physicians basically prescribe the medicines listed below for Fibromyalgia patients

Antidepressants: Antidepressants are prescribed to individuals suffering with depression. The medication works to maintain the Serotonin levels in your brain.

NSAIDs: They are OTP pain relievers helpful to reduce stiffness and pain that occurs as a result of Fibromyalgia and its effectiveness differs with individuals.

Narcotics: Narcotics aren’t usually recommended by physicians for treating Fibromyalgia because of its addictive nature and dependency.

Muscle Relaxants: if patients take muscle relaxants prior sleeping, it helps reduce spasms and pain

Chiropractor

Chiropractic treatment works on the fact that restricted movement in your spine can result in reduced pain and function. Spinal therapy is a type of therapy that the chiropractor implements to treat the restricted mobility in spine. The target is to restore movement of spine and thus decrease pain and improve function.

Exercise

Fibromyalgia exercise proves to be the most powerful remedies in treating Fibromyalgia. Research and scientific evidences has proved that exercising for at least 20 minutes on a daily basis can work well for patients suffering from Fibromyalgia and is a natural treatment that works. Exercise becomes the important factor in Fibromyalgia Treatment and a properly planned exercise routine can help improve your body tissues, increase mobility and decrease pain. The exercise program designed for Fibromyalgia should be gradual and slow.

Massage Therapy

Massage therapy includes various manipulative techniques used to move the soft tissues and body’s muscles. The goal of massage therapy is to enhance the circulation in your muscles, eliminate body’s waste products and enhance the flow of nutrients in your body. Massage helps relaxing your muscles, improve joint mobility and increase the body’s production of natural painkillers. It also helps in reducing anxiety, stress in patients who suffer from pain.

Osteopathy

Osteopaths perform therapies which are similar to what Allopathic physicians perform and osteopaths are licensed to perform various therapies. One sector where osteopathy is different from conventional medicine and is similar to chiropractic medicine is that both chiropractic medicine and osteopathy focus on manipulating and finding out the problems related to spine and joints. The treatment is effective to treat the symptoms of Fibromyalgia.

Physiotherapy

Physical therapy is part of health care which helps the patient to regain the strength in bones, muscles and nervous system. The basic therapies included in this treatment are electric stimulation, ultrasound, heat and ice. Manual therapy, therapeutic massage, hydrotherapy, therapeutic massage is used to help patient get rid of pain.

Self Care

Reduce stress- Avoid emotional stress and overexertion. Give yourself some time to relax and practice techniques that are helpful in reducing stress like meditation, deep breathing etc as part of Fibromyalgia treatment. Sleep- sufficient amount of sleep is important to avoid being fatigue. Make sure that you allot time for your sleep wherein you go to bed at the same time and wake at the same time the next morning. Taking short naps is helpful to restore energy.

Is it painful all over your body? It can be Fibromyalgia

Is it painful all through your body? And it doesn’t end? It could be Fibromyalgia. The symptoms are such that you cannot recognize it as a disease. It affects joints, muscles, ligaments and your body pains even with a single touch. You may be suffering from Fibromyalgia. Let us know more about Fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is basically not a disease but a chronic condition. There are solutions to treat the condition, but many treatments leave long lasting side effects. Let us have a look at negative and positive sides of treatments available for Fibromyalgia.

In case you are suffering from Fibromyalgia, you feel hurt through entire body and feel exhausted as well. Your doctor might not be able to detect the condition even after several lab tests. The actual cause of this condition is still not known, but studies say that the nerves present in muscles tissue get irritated because of inflammation and send painful signals to the brain and a person then recognizes it as a pain condition.

One test that helps doctor to detect Fibromyalgia symptoms is to identify the locations on the body that get sensitive to severe pain even with slight pressure. The tender points for Fibromyalgia pain are

  • Around neck’s lower vertebra.
  • Middle of your knee joint
  • Upper back and neck muscles
  • Mid back muscles
  • On elbow side
  • Outer and upper buttock muscles
  • At second rib insertion
  • Around thigh bone’s upper part
  • In muscles that are connected to skull base

Fibromyalgia can also occur in children. Many people suffering from Fibromyalgia can also have

  • Headaches
  • Fatigue syndrome(chronic)
  • Lupus
  • Endometriosis
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Restless leg syndrome
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • IBS
  • Depression
  • Stress disorder

The Fibromyalgia symptoms can vary with certain changes in weather, stress, physical activities or sometimes just any time of the day. The pain exists both below and above your waist. You also suffer from fatigue due to disturbance in sleeping pattern. You feel tired when you awake as you couldn’t get enough sleep. This condition hardly allows people to get sound sleep without disturbances in order to refresh their soul and body. The sleeping disorders often lead to other problems like restless leg syndrome and sleep apnea.

The condition is hereditary too that means if anyone in your family has this condition, you have an increased risk of developing Fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia develops more in women than children or men. It starts in middle adulthood or during early adulthood as well.

People suffering from lupus or rheumatoid arthritis they are at increased risk of getting Fibromyalgia. Treatments for this condition include required medication and self care. The treatment involves improving overall health of the person and reducing the symptoms of Fibromyalgia.

There are many herbal treatments available to treat Fibromyalgia and these treatments do not lead to any side-effect too. The natural supplements also help in relieving pain caused due to Fibromyalgia.

Debunk the myths and Facts about Fibromyalgia

The myths about Fibromyalgia are as global as its symptoms. There are so many things still unknown about Fibromyalgia. Here are some myths about Fibromyalgia and facts to know what is true and what all is false about Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia doesn’t exist and is a fake condition

In late 1980s Fibromyalgia was circulated.  Later the term was used to describe the pain in soft tissues of muscles. Now people are even told that Fibromyalgia is a pain which is a mental condition.

Patients suffering from Fibromyalgia cannot have a healthy relationship

Fibromyalgia pain leaves a stressful impact and it can almost halt human interactions. You tend to lose interest in surroundings even in those who are your closed ones. The patient doesn’t make out the importance of people who are with them. Once any one in patient’s family understands the problem, he/she can help during their treatment. In any medical condition, the support of your family is very important. Same goes for Fibromyalgia patients. It is bit difficult to deal with but with the help of your loved one you can overcome the pain.

Sex is not allowed for Fibromyalgia patients

As in relationships, Fibromyalgia patients might not feel like having sex because of the pain their go through, but if your partner really understands and is ready to help you listen to your problems there isn’t any problem why the patient cannot engage in sex. With time and you recovery you will notice that your might land up noticing more interest in having sex.

Fibromyalgia patients need to be careful regarding the diet they take

Well, this isn’t true. Simple additives and carbohydrates are toxic for patients who are suffering from Fibromyalgia. There are other amazing substitutes like stevia or xylitol and whey is the best. Read labels on food you buy. It is advised that everyone should avoid purchasing middle aisles from grocery shop. It is true for Fibromyalgia patients.

Do Fibromyalgia patients pretend to be in pain?

Well this is a myth that needs to be discussed about as the blockage of energy areas causes Fibromyalgia makes impossible for anyone to see the disability in any individual. The patient will experience pain that is usually a physical damage like shooting pain, soreness, aches, but doctors sometimes are unable to trace physical abnormalities in area that pains.

Doctors get confused as patient experiences a lot many symptoms and they treat the patient based on symptoms.

Exercise needs to be forbidden for Fibromyalgia patients

With the Fibromyalgia pain the patients aren’t able to get out of their bed. Still one of the best medicines for Fibromyalgia patients is adopting an exercise routine on a daily basis. Off course the patient doesn’t need to hit the gym for 4-5 hrs, but simple walking for at least 20-30 minutes can be really helpful. If this doesn’t work for you, you can walk for 5 minutes.

The pain hurts so much that the patient might not feel like getting out of the bed, but simple exercise like walking works to keep the body active.

Fibromyalgia-Gabapentin- New study about Brain Fog occurrence

Many people who suffer from chronic fatigue or Fibromyalgia use prescription drug like Gabapentin (Neurontin) to aid and manage symptoms of pain and epileptic seizure. the disturbed epileptic seizure results in sleep apnea, sleep dysfunction or restless leg syndrome.

The new study shows that due to thrombospondin and unnatural function of brain the possible results seen are brain dysfunction. If you are suffering from brain fog related to Fibromyalgia or deficiency of immune system related to chronic fatigue syndrome, then Gabapentin may not be the best choice or first line choice of drug.  It proves to be logical that it adds to the existing symptoms if you continue using this drug(prescription).

Let us know how and why?

By using Gabapentin, you might disturb the important brain connection that is important for you for cognition and proper memory. Most of us are aware of how delicate our brain is. If anything goes wrong with this delicate part of our body, it can be life-threatening. Too much of drug interactions or anesthesia and you might lose your senses. In simple words anything that leaves a negative impact on the normal functioning of our brain should be researched, suspected, avoided and reported, if possible.

New study shows that an individual who is suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome or fibromyalgia can show the following symptoms if using this drug

  • Not able to think properly or not able to think only
  • Couldn’t recollect memories of say a week before even if the brain is recessed.
  • Mentally incapable of thinking even below normal level, unable to think and feel numb.
  • Not being able to do logical reasoning even simple ones like solving a financial problem or not able to judge what needs to be spoken in a discussion.
  • Not able to think or care what will happen in a stressful situation or vice versa like not bothered about what will be the result. This even leads to emotional detachment. These results in like a person who is least bothered about living his life and in turn it creates suicidal thoughts or chronic depression.

Brain fog is a situation that pulls you down and is incredibly tough and scary symptom to handle as compared to other symptoms.

This is something to explain how powerful the drug is and can affect your loved one. If the brain has stopped functioning normally, then how would you know what the reason is or cause behind it?  What might be happening? So if you notice such symptoms it is better to consult your health care person to take actions immediately. There are many people who lose connection to life while taking the drug and if they get well, they see a new life as the brain becomes functional and live again and body follows the brain.

Make sure you consult your doctor before taking this drug as the symptoms can be scary and you might lose your connection with life. Better start with right medication and speak to your doctor.

Complementary and Alternative Therapies for Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia can be difficult to treat. Not all doctors are familiar with fibromyalgia and its treatment, so it is important to find a doctor who is. Many family physicians, general internists, or rheumatologists (doctors who specialize in arthritis and other conditions that affect the joints or soft tissues) can treat fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia treatment often requires a team approach, with your doctor, a physical therapist, possibly other health professionals, and most importantly, yourself, all playing an active role. It can be hard to assemble this team, and you may struggle to find the right professionals to treat you. When you do, however, the combined expertise of these various professionals can help you improve your quality of life.

You may find several members of the treatment team you need at a clinic. There are pain clinics that specialize in pain and rheumatology clinics that specialize in arthritis and other rheumatic diseases, including fibromyalgia.

Only three medications, duloxetine, milnacipran, and pregabalin are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of fibromyalgia. Duloxetine was originally developed for and is still used to treat depression. Milnacipran is similar to a drug used to treat depression but is FDA approved only for fibromyalgia. Pregaballin is a medication developed to treat neuropathic pain (chronic pain caused by damage to the nervous system).

Doctors also treat fibromyalgia with a variety of other medications such as Gabapentin developed and approved for other purposes.

Complementary and Alternative Therapies

Many people with fibromyalgia also report varying degrees of success with complementary and alternative therapies, including massage, movement therapies (such as Pilates and the Feldenkrais method), chiropractic treatments, acupuncture, and various herbs and dietary supplements for different fibromyalgia symptoms. (For more information on complementary and alternative therapies, contact the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine.

Although some of these supplements are being studied for fibromyalgia, there is little, if any, scientific proof yet that they help. FDA does not regulate the sale of dietary supplements, so information about side effects, proper dosage, and the amount of a preparation’s active ingredients may not be well known. If you are using or would like to try a complementary or alternative therapy, you should first speak with your doctor, who may know more about the therapy’s effectiveness, as well as whether it is safe to try in combination with your medications.

Besides taking medicine prescribed by your doctor, there are many things you can do to minimize the impact of fibromyalgia on your life.

These include:

  •  Getting enough sleep. Getting enough sleep and the right kind of sleep can help ease the pain and fatigue of fibromyalgia. Even so, many people with fibromyalgia have problems such as pain, restless legs syndrome, or brainwave irregularities that interfere with restful sleep. It is important to discuss any sleep problems with your doctor, who can prescribe or recommend treatment for them.
  • Exercising. Although pain and fatigue may make exercise and daily activities difficult, it is crucial to be as physically active as possible. Research has repeatedly shown that regular exercise is one of the most effective treatments for fibromyalgia. People who have too much pain or fatigue to do vigorous exercise should begin with walking or other gentle exercise and build their endurance and intensity slowly.
  • Making changes at work. Most people with fibromyalgia continue to work, but they may have to make big changes to do so. For example, some people cut down the number of hours they work, switch to a less demanding job, or adapt a current job. If you face obstacles at work, such as an uncomfortable desk chair that leaves your back aching or difficulty lifting heavy boxes or files, your employer may make adaptations that will enable you to keep your job. An occupational therapist can help you design a more comfortable workstation or find more efficient and less painful ways to lift.
  •  Eating well. Although some people with fibromyalgia report feeling better when they eat or avoid certain foods, no specific diet has been proven to influence fibromyalgia. Of course, it is important to have a healthy, balanced diet. Not only will proper nutrition give you more energy and make you generally feel better, it will also help you avoid other health problems.
  • Take Nu Skin Products especially Nu skin lifepak nano for balanced nutrition.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition, meaning it lasts a long time, possibly a lifetime. However, it may be comforting to know that fibromyalgia is not a progressive disease. It is never fatal, and it will not cause damage to the joints, muscles, or internal organs. In many people, the condition does improve over time.

 

Foods Said to Cause Fibromyaligia Flares

A sudden attack of intense pain and stiffness in the muscles is known as Fibromyalgia Flares. There are certain foods that you need to avoid because these 6 foods are said to cause Fibromyalgia Flares.

  • Nightshade Vegetables  A class of vegetables known as nightshades are known to cause aching and pain in the joints and muscles as well as weakness and fatigue for people who are sensitive, Ygoy.com reports. The nightshades contain a compound called solanine that is responsible for this reaction. Anecdotal evidence points to these items being the culprits: peppers, tomatoes, paprika, eggplant, white potatoes and tobacco. The reaction can happen quickly or within days. Some people become completely crippled during a reaction to nightshades. Smoking cigarettes and using other tobacco products, even when they are not ingested, may produce symptoms.
  • Gluten-containing Grains Gluten-containing grains such as wheat, barley, rye and possibly oats have been shown to produce a myriad of symptoms in those who are sensitive, The Savvy Celiac website explains. For people who have gluten allergies and are gluten intolerant, the entire body can react immediately or within several hours or days. Some of the symptoms experienced may be severe inflammation, swelling, headaches, respiratory problems, weakness, fatigue, and extreme body pain. There is also an issue of cross-contamination for those who are sensitive, and close attention must be paid to reading labels and eating foods that have not been in contact with other foods containing gluten. By eliminating all gluten-containing foods, starting with processed white flour, you will likely see a difference in your pain level and other symptoms.
  • Artificial Sweeteners and Food Additives Certain food additives and artificial sweeteners may create serious side effects, worsening fibromyalgia in those who are sensitive. All artificial sweeteners should be eliminated as well as foods containing them, such as sodas and other diet foods.  Monosodium glutamate (MSG) is the most common food additive, Laura A. Coleman and R. Roubenoff explain in their book, “Nutrition and Rheumatic Disease (Nutrition and Health).” Used as a preservative and flavor enhancer, MSG is found in one form or another in just about every packaged or canned food on the market unless labeled otherwise. An wide range of symptoms have been reported that mimic or aggravate fibromyalgia such as dizziness, headaches, stomach upsets, nausea, body aches and joint pain especially in arms and hands, difficulty thinking, mood changes and more. Unless the label on the package says “MSG free,” assume what you are buying includes MSG. Most Asian restaurants also include MSG in their preparations, so ask for it to be eliminated or don’t eat at that restaurant.
  • Foods Containing MSG Keep a list of these common foods available so you recognize which are the culprits. Anything with soy sauce, soy protein, bouillon, broths and soup stock, foods labeled with “natural flavoring,” textured protein, TVP, barley malt or whey protein are on the “avoid” list.
  • Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) Pseudonyms MSG is a chemical and known by many names. Here is a list of most of those names to keep with you so you recognize them when you shop. They include sodium caseinate, yeast nutrient, calcium caseinate, hydrolyzed protein, autolyzed yeast, yeast extract, yeast food, hydrolyzed corn gluten, natrium glutamate, monopotassium glutamate, carrageenan, maltodextrin,  citric acid, soy protein isolate, malt extract, whey protein protease, malt flavoring. Foods labeled “enzyme modified” has MSG. Food labeled as protein fortified, whey protein isolate and protease enzymes, should be avoided. Beware of flavorings and fermented foods, enzymes, natural flavor and seasonings.
  • Caffeine: Caffeine intake can trigger headaches and also interfere with sleep patterns. It stays in your system for several hours which can further result to fatigue. It can also increase your heart rate and blood pressure.
  • Refined Sugar: Sugar can increase blood sugar swings associated with adrenal fatigue. Too much sugar can also leaving fibro patients in even more pain and drops in blood sugar can cause flaring of muscle tightening and anxiety.
  • Aspartame (Also Known as NutraSweet): This could increase or stimulate pain receptor of the nervous system that can lead to pain. This can also turn to chronic pain from acute pain.
  • Saturated Fats: It inhibits circulation and increase the sensitivity of nerve endings to pain.
  • Red Meat: Red meats are high in saturated fats. It interferes with proper circulation of blood and thus leads to fatigue and pain.
  • Alcohol: Alcohol promotes inflammation, which increases pain because the toxins produced from alcohol don’t process well by Fibromyalgia patients.

food2fib

What Causes Fibromyalgia and what may be the reasons of Fibromyalgia

The causes of fibromyalgia are unknown, but there are probably a number of factors involved. Many people associate the development of fibromyalgia with a physically or emotionally stressful or traumatic event, such as an automobile accident. Some connect it to repetitive injuries. Others link it to an illness. For others, fibromyalgia seems to occur spontaneously.

Many researchers are examining other causes, including problems with how the central nervous system (the brain and spinal cord) processes pain.

Some scientists speculate that a person’s genes may regulate the way his or her body processes painful stimuli. According to this theory, people with fibromyalgia may have a gene or genes that cause them to react strongly to stimuli that most people would not perceive as painful. There have already been several genes identified that occur more commonly in fibromyalgia patients, and NIAMS-supported researchers are currently looking at other possibilities.

fibromyalgiacause

fibreasons2

Fibromyalgia can run in families. It’s likely that there is an unidentified genetic abnormality that makes certain people more at risk for fibromyalgia. The National Institute of Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) states that certain genes may regulate the way that the body regulates pain responses. Scientists speculate that people with fibromyalgia may carry one or more genes that cause them to react strongly to stimuli that another person may not perceive as painful.

Fibromyalgia Triggers

For many patients, symptoms begin after emotional or physical trauma or a bout with an infectious disease. These do not likely cause fibromyalgia by themselves, but may trigger the onset in people who are already at risk for it.

Sleep Disturbances

Problems with getting enough sleep, or spending enough time in the deepest stages of sleep, are common in this disorder. However, doctors are not sure if this is a symptom or a cause of the disorder. Improper sleep patterns can affect the levels of some of the brain chemicals listed above.

Risk Factors

There are several factors that indicate an increased risk of fibromyalgia. However, their presence doesn’t mean one will certainly be diagnosed with the syndrome.

Gender

According to the NIAMS, Women are eight to nine times more likely than men to have fibromyalgia.  Scientists believe female reproductive hormones may play a role in the pain disorder.

Age

According to the NIAMS, the most common age to be diagnosed with fibromyalgia is early to middle adulthood, between 20 and 50 years old.

Family History

If you have a close family member with fibromyalgia, you are more likely to be diagnosed yourself.

Sleep Disorders

It is not known if sleep problems are a symptom or a cause of fibromyalgia. However, people who have disorders affecting sleep such as sleep apnea and restless leg syndrome are more likely to have the pain disorder.

Other Rheumatic Diseases

Rheumatic diseases affect the joints, muscles, and bones. People who have another rheumatic disease are more likely to have fibromyalgia as well. These diseases include:

  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • osteoarthritis
  • lupus
  • ankylosing spondylitis