I went to rheumy expecting a diagnosis of fibro, but when she did the tender point test only one hurt. when I push on them more than half hurt. She so lightly pressed on the spots, I couldn't imagine that hurting anyone. If it does, I'm sorry for those people. She said I have chronic myofascial pain and is sending me for physical therapy, but my chiro says that is fibro. I'm confused.
I don't know how much pressure should be applied during a diagnostic exam.
I can tell you that when I have been in a fibro flare the slightest touch would hurt horribly. I consider myself in remission right now because I am not going around with constant pain. I don't hurt when I move. I don't hurt when I sit or lie down. The only time I do hurt is when I put pressure on the "tender points." I don't consider myself cured since all of the tender points do hurt when pressure is applied. However, I do intreprete this as being pain free since I have to make an effort (pushing on points) to feel the pain.
The ACR criteria for fibro tender points is 20 pounds of pressure, which is a fair bit! Try squeezing your bathroom scale. Having said that, a *good* doc will start with much less pressure, as for someone w/severe fibro/flare, that 20# pressure is torture.
When all is said & done, we aren't so much helped by the diagnositic labels. I hope you are helped by the myofascial therapy.
Thanks elmhar. she certainly didn't apply 20 pounds pressure. When I told her the points didn't hurt, she didn't try applying more pressure either. I really hope the phys. therapy helps also. I think she's sending me to it for my hip, but I really have the most pain in my upper back, shoulder, neck, and face, as well as a little into my upper chest on the same side.
I do hope that the physical therapy helps. It is very confusing to have different doctors give you different diagnosis. I guess it really doesn't matter what they call it as long as you get the help you need. But I am sure it is very frustrating.
Here are the symptoms I've been dealing with for the last 16 months.
Started with right side abdominal,flank and lower back pain, burning and pressure. I went to three docs before one finally ordered an abdominal u/s. It was normal. Bloodwork normal. Then June of last year I started having RIGHT sided face/neck pain. TMJ type jaw pain. After 2 trips to the ENT, diagnosed with myofascial pain disorder.
I started having diarrhea every day in December, that lasted 1 1/2 months, then I started taking probiotics. The first day of probiotics it stopped and hadn't returned.
My hips, especially the left, have been hurting, as well as my whole left leg on and off for about 4 months. I've also had on and off rib pain and underarm shooting pains and tenderness.
Since the end of January, the worst part is the LEFT sided pain in my face, neck, shoulder, upper back and upper chest. There is pressure feeling in my neck and around my ear. Sometimes when it really hurts it can hurt into my arm and hand. There is a small, movable lump in my upper back, right next to my shoulder blade, that when is pressed on sends pain up into the back of my head. It also mimicks the pain I have in my neck and face.
Last night I had this twitch in my right leg, above my knee, that lasted about 2 hours. It was a constant twitch, like a heart beat, but slower. Hope that doesn't come back!!!
I haven't gone to my regular doctor about this Left-sided pain at all. I've been to the doctor's so many times in the last 16 months, and I know they look at my chart and think I'm crazy. Forgot to mention I suffer from Panic disorder, which started a few months before my pain symptoms started, so they think my pain is anxiety related. The chiro just said the lump was from repetetive motion, and that it moved and wasn't cancer. The massage therapist spent a lot of time trying to get rid of it, and ever since I've been in worse pain up in my shoulder, neck and face. It is horrible, but I guess any kind of chronic pain is.
Ya know, the worst part for me, other than having days where I can barely function, is the health anxiety all this has created. I often think I have something fatal and am dying, and the docs haven't found it yet. By the time they find it it will be too late, and my poor little girls will be without a mother. I hate thinking this way, but with no diagnosis, and the doctor brushing me off to the rheumy, I don't know what to think.
BTW, the rheumatologist went on and on about my "panic attacks" and how it could be my heart and I could be having progessively worsening arrhythmia. I told her I've had EKGs and they were normal, but she said I should wear a halter monitor cause I have palpatations. My doc never saw the use for that because my palpatations are not on a regular basis. But I swear, the rheumy would not buy that I have panic attacks, even though I'm convinced I do.
Oh, I also have irregular menstrual cycles, have since I went off the pill at 24 to try to conceive. The rheumy had a field day with that asking why I haven't seen a endocronologist. I told her the OB-GYN said as long as I have at least 8 a year, that I'm okay, and that all my hormone levels have been fine.
Don't know about my temp. as I don't take it on a regular basis, but I normally run a little low, about 97.2 to 97.6.
I start physical therapy in May. The first trip to the chiro seemed to help, but the last one seemed to make it worse. I think it's cause the massage therapist spent so much time on the lump, which I think is a trigger point for me.
sorry to get here so late. perhaps you have both fibromyalgia and cronic myofacial pain? i do. so does goldenwings. when they both get going together it can be very difficult to keep your mind balanced.
i did all that fear stuff and panic attacks. then i got my fanny into a shrink. tho it took years to learn new boundaries/coping skills and come to terms with my health, i did and i am at peace. i graduated with honors a couple of years ago. in all my health care this was my kick start to joy as a sick person.
do whatever tests you feel are safe for your body. it is always best to rule out any other possibility.
know what i figured out? i am going to live a very long time and i am going to know great pain. i do not have some horrid dis-ease that is going to end my life early. i have fibro and it is going to hang for years and years and years with me. this i can do. so can you. it just takes time to get the hang of it.
[QUOTE=wonderingtoo;2***744]Started with right side abdominal,flank and lower back pain, burning and pressure. I went to three docs before one finally ordered an abdominal u/s. It was normal. Bloodwork normal. QUOTE]
When I read the first sentence above I immediately thought internal organ problems. However, from the second sentence I assume the u/s and blood tests ruled that out.
I can certainly understand why you are experiencing health anxiety. You have alot of really weird symptoms and you are in alot of pain. I would not think that the panic attacks or anxiety are causing the pain. I would think that whatever is out of whack in you body is causing both the panick attacks and all of the pain.
I asked about your temp. because I thought if it was running a little high you may have an infection.
I hope you are able to get it all resolved. When do you wear the heat moniter? I think it is a good idea to do this test to rule out any heart trouble.
You know with as much agony as you are in, I would expect your "fibro trigger points" to be more tender. However, this is a very weird disease so you can't ever really know what to expect.
One of my Dr's said I might have FM because of all my symptoms. He referred me to another Dr to determine if I meet the criteria for FM diagnosis.
I read lots about FM symptoms, and I have most of the symptoms I've read about (and more!), but I don't seem to have the sensitive pressure areas that Dr's who diagnose FM apparent use to qualify a patient for a FM diagnosis.
In anyone's experience, does lack of pain in the pressure points mean that you don't meet the criteria for a FM diagnosis?
It's not that I want to have FM, but I have so many of the symptoms that it would be a relief of sorts to be diagnosed with FM so at least I know what's wrong with me and can be treated for a recognized illness. And if I don't have pain in the pressure points but I have so many other recognized symptoms of FM, then I wonder what I may have if it's NOT FM???