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Old 09-03-2006, 02:16 PM   #1
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Seasonal Fibro?

Hi, it's been awhile since I posted. Does anyone have seasonal fibro? I don't know if I have fibro, but my symptoms started last August. I suffered through the winter, several trips to the GP, back x-rays, blood tests that all came back negative. So I began to think that it was just in my head. Probably around the end of March, early April, the symptoms disappeared. I even had strength again! So I really throught the whole thing was in my head and that last year my body was just feeling the effects of losing my mother (she died in July 2005).

However, just like clockwork, the symptoms came back a couple of weeks ago. Like I said, I haven't had a diagnosis. Right now I'm not as bad as I was last winter. I'm ok in the morning, maybe a bit stiff, but I'm 41. However, by mid afternoon, my entire body is tired and achy. I'm dragging by the time I get home and my job is a desk job (I was working in an animal hospital last fall and winter). It happens whether I am at home or work. I'm afraid that this is only the begining and that like last winter, I will end up not being able to sleep and will be weak again.

So I'm wondering if fibro can be seasonal? If so, I should probably plan on getting my GP to refer me to a neurologist. Last year my GP said that my body just had "wear and tear arthritis" An X-ray from a few years ago showed a bone spur on my spine. Last year, the x-ray showed nothing. I saw a PT and she concluded that the back pain was spinal and not muscular. ( I have had back pain for yeard). I would like a diagnosis, not because it's going to ease physical pain, but so it could ease the emotional pain of thinking that it's all in my head. It seems that the pain is worse with colder weather.

Last edited by wordweaver; 09-03-2006 at 05:01 PM.

 
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Old 09-03-2006, 04:44 PM   #2
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

Hi Wordweaver:

Based on what I know about fibromyalgia, I suspect you do not have this particular condition (my opinion). What may be going on is SAD (Seasonal Affective DIiorder?). Some people are affected by the fewer rays of light that come with winter weather, and can cause depression and body aches. It is treated by sitting under an unltraviolet light every day for a prescribed time. I'm not really familiar with this condition, so this is only a suggestion for you to look into. Do some research.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition, 24/7. There will be days that are worse, and some that are better, but it is always with you if you have it.

Blessings,
Kirstee

 
Old 09-03-2006, 05:22 PM   #3
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

Thanks for the response. I doubt it is seasonal depression since I take Wellbutrin year round. I didn't bother to post all my symptoms since I did so last year.

 
Old 09-03-2006, 06:33 PM   #4
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

Hi WordWeaver,

Is it starting to cool off where you live? Thyroid hormone requirements are higher in cool weather ... insufficient TH can lead to aching. The best test for this is a free T3 level -- and ck. that you are near the midpoint of the range. Most docs will 'screen' w/TSH, which is actually a pituitary hormone. The TSH test is full of pitfalls when one is going for an accurate dx.

Certain hormones (thyroid, adrenal, sex) tend to be released by the body in the early morning. It's possible that when those levels are higher, one feels better. As those hormone levels wane throughout the day, pain can increase.

Over the long term most AD meds are a little wearing on thyroid function. Not to mean you should stop your AD, but rather, keep on top of your free T3.

Vitamin D deficiency is more common in the cool months, and can cause aching. Vit D defic is more common than previously thought. Again, a blood test can be done.

Might there be an allergen that is triggering your aching. A prime candidate is mold -- and actually some molds wreak havoc through toxins directly, not just allergies.

Another possibility is could there be chemicals or toxins in your work environment that are less noticeable in the warmer months when one tends to open widows, air out, etc.

Is there a difference in your activity level in the seasons? Some people find that activity is the magic talisman that wards off pain flares in fibro.

Does your diet change substantially in the fall & winter? A subgroup of fibro sufferers have food intolerances that influence flare patterns.

Well, good luck with your detective work. Let us know what you figure out.

Best wishes.

 
Old 09-04-2006, 04:17 AM   #5
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

Thanks for the input. I had lots of bloodwork done last winter and everything came out normal, including thyroid. Of course I was only seeing a GP and that is why I am wondering if I should see a rheumatologist because he/she might different tests to take. As far as toxins in my work environment, I don't work in the same place that I did last fall and winter. Last year my job was pretty physical (in an animal hospital), now I have a desk job in an admissions office at a local college. No diet change between summer and winter. This has been going on since at least 2001.

Last year, when it all started again, I was tested for Lymes because I fit many of the symptoms of Lymes and had been in MA for my mother's funeral (my sister and I walked in the woods wearing shorts) and the aches started 4-6 weeks later. I know that Lyme's is cyclical and that is why I asked if Fibro could be seasonal.

Basically that is the question that I would like answered. I also know that arthritis worsens in colder and damper months.

 
Old 09-06-2006, 08:25 AM   #6
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

fibro is affected by changes in the climate. especially density. is it seasonal? yea, in a way it is. winters are harder as we have to wear more clothing and that causes pain. inactivity during the winter adds to the fatigue. summers are best for me. i have more energy and when the pain hits i go out in the sun for a few minutes. the heat of the sun helps the pain evaporate. this is just me tho. others are different. i am more active in summer, kayaking, hiking and gardening.
again this is my experience only.
peace,
bluelakelady
ps. for myself i have days and weeks without fm visiting me. i call them windows. tho it is within me all the time it does take little vacations to jamaica for some rum and cokecola, giggle, leaving me to play without pain.

 
Old 09-06-2006, 11:50 AM   #7
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

Quote:
Originally Posted by wordweaver
Hi, it's been awhile since I posted. Does anyone have seasonal fibro? I don't know if I have fibro, but my symptoms started last August. I suffered through the winter, several trips to the GP, back x-rays, blood tests that all came back negative. So I began to think that it was just in my head. Probably around the end of March, early April, the symptoms disappeared. I even had strength again! So I really throught the whole thing was in my head and that last year my body was just feeling the effects of losing my mother (she died in July 2005).

However, just like clockwork, the symptoms came back a couple of weeks ago. Like I said, I haven't had a diagnosis. Right now I'm not as bad as I was last winter. I'm ok in the morning, maybe a bit stiff, but I'm 41. However, by mid afternoon, my entire body is tired and achy. I'm dragging by the time I get home and my job is a desk job (I was working in an animal hospital last fall and winter). It happens whether I am at
So I'm wondering if fibro can be seasonal? If so, I should probably plan on getting my GP to refer me to a neurologist. Last year my GP said that my body just had "wear and tear arthritis" An X-ray from a few years ago showed a bone spur on my spine. Last year, the x-ray showed nothing. I saw a PT and she concluded that the back pain was spinal and not muscular. ( I have had back pain for yeard). I would like a diagnosis, not because it's going to ease physical pain, but so it could ease the emotional pain of thinking that it's all in my head. It seems that the pain is worse with colder weather.
Your symptons are exactly the same as mine and are also seasonal, I have been having tests over the last 4 years, to no avail. Would love to know if you get a diagnosis.

Last edited by Louisegti; 09-06-2006 at 11:51 AM.

 
Old 09-06-2006, 01:35 PM   #8
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

hi louisegti,
welcome to the board. keep searching. every test is a big sigh of relief. at least you don't have that, whatever it be. try a rheumie. i know referrals are an issue there in the uk. no harm in asking. do not give up.
again welcome. i hope answers come for you. in the meantime hang out here. we most all have more than fibromyalgia.
peace,
bluelakelady

 
Old 09-06-2006, 07:04 PM   #9
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

Mine use to be seasonal, thats when I was first hit with pains. When I went to the Dr and after loads of tests he told me that is what I have. I did say BUT people I know and have read about are in pain CONSTANTLY, he said they are more severe. He said you have a mild case.

Well seasonal just went out the door this year! I was in pain during the summer which is normally my best time. I havent been pain free since.....I have better days but its still with me. After 6 yrs I have gotten worse and I made my first rheumy appt for this October.

They say its not progressive, I don't buy that

Hope

 
Old 09-06-2006, 07:22 PM   #10
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

For me, it seems that any weather changes will trigger flareups. While I have pain 24/7 some days are worse than others. Sometimes FMS will target one of my hip areas, another my back, then other times my arms etc. I have had muscles spasms arcross my rib cage that made it extremely painful to breath. To the point that I had to focus on breathing in, then out while controlling the pain. Right now I have chronic muscle spasms across my back that are pinching a series of nerves. I have numbness from my shoulders, down to my fingers in both hands, numbness across my back, chest and stomach. Muscle relaxers and anti-inflammatories don't help. I have an appointment on Friday to see if I can get an MRI done to check for the where the nerves are pinched. On the other hand, it could be worse.

 
Old 09-06-2006, 09:26 PM   #11
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

After reading your post, it makes good sense that while not necessarily seasonal, but like Blue said climate affected. I live near the Carolina coast and we have had lots of fun get ready Hurricane season type storms lately and I think that may be attributing to my recent and quite painful flareup. I was dx last November, and I can tell fluctuations in pain/problems based on the weather. Humidity a real killer around here in the summer....lol. Hope you can get some clarification with your doctor.
Mim

 
Old 09-07-2006, 02:44 AM   #12
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

Thank all of you for the replies. Climate related does make sense. It certainly gets a lot colder here in the winter. In the winter I have to shovel and clear the roof every time it snows, so I do stay pretty active in the winter. Last winter I got really weak though and that bothered me a lot. Fortunately most of the snow shoveling I have to do is pushing snow and not lifting and throwing it.

I had cocksackie virus last month. I caught it from my boss. I was way more wiped out with it than she was. In fact, I had to take a day off from work. Is it possible that the virus brought me back to another round of pain?

Again, thanks for all the responses. Once again, you have reminded me that I am not crazy!

 
Old 09-07-2006, 05:55 AM   #13
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Re: Seasonal Fibro?

hi weaver of words,
yes, any virus can spark a flare up. those little bugs that slow others down lay us out flat.
much as i love the sight of snow i am so glad i live in california where i get just enough to giggle and play without having to shovel it. i bet you have great muscles!
where we live affects how we get thru the seasons.
how are you feeling today? better i am hoping. i will dance and paint today sending magic healing energy out to all of us here. may you have a pure hour of pain free mental power.
peace,
bluelakelady

 
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