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Old 06-03-2004, 12:13 PM   #1
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Fibromyalgia

Hi Ladies,

I've heard that fibro is caused by hormonal imbalances. But I am getting pretty confused. I found this and have many of these symptoms - it seems like we all do here. Let me know what you all think? I put my symptoms in CAPS. I guess I'll show this to my gastro on Monday - it's all in black and white. No cure either. Just all the meds that have been talked about on here. They did mention that 5-HTP is good for you though - anyone take it?

kc

SYMPTOMS/SYNDROMES ASSOCIATED WITH FMS

In addition to pain and fatigue, a number of allied symptoms/syndromes
are currently associated with FMS.
Patients typically experience one or more of the following:

STIFFNESS: Body stiffness may be particularly apparent UPON AWAKENING and after prolonged periods of sitting or standing in one position or coincide with changes in temperature or relative humidity.

Increased Headaches Or Facial Pain: Fibromyalgia patients may experience frequent migraine, tension, or vascular headaches. Pain may also consist of referred pain to the temporal area (temples) or behind the eyes. Approximately one-third of patients with fibromyalgia are thought to have pain and dysfunction of the temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, (located where the jaw meets the ear) which produces not only headaches but also jaw and facial pain.


SLEEP DISTURBANCES: Despite sufficient amounts of sleep, FMS patients may awaken feeling unrefreshed, as if they have barely slept. Alternatively, they may have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. Some also suffer from the condition sleep apnea. The reasons for the non-restorative sleep and other sleep difficulties of Fibromyalgia are unknown. However, early FMS research in sleep labs documented disruptions in the deep (delta) sleep of some Fibromyalgia patients.


GASTRO COMPLAINTS: Digestive disturbances, abdominal pain, and bloating are quite common in FMS as are constipation and/or diarrhea (also known as "irritable bowel syndrome" or IBS). In addition, patients may have difficulty swallowing food which research suggests is a result of objective abnormalities in smooth muscle functioning in the esophagus.


GENITO-URINARY PROBLEMS: FMS patients may experience increased frequency of urination or increased urgency to urinate, typically in the absence of a bladder infection. Some may develop a more chronic, painful inflammatory condition of the bladder wall known as "interstitial cystitis" (IC). Women with FMS may have more painful menstrual periods or experience worsening of their FMS symptoms during this time. Conditions such as vulvar vestibulitis or vulvodynia, characterized by a painful vulvar region and painful sexual intercourse, may also develop in women.


PARASTHESIA: Numbness or tingling, particularly, in the hands or feet, sometimes accompanies FMS. Also known as "paresthesia", the sensation can be described as *****ling or burning.


TEMPERATURE SENSITIVITY (I'M ALWAYS COLD): Persons with Fibromyalgia tend to be highly sensitive to ambient temperature. Some often feel abnormally cold (compared to others around them) while others feel abnormally warm. An unusual sensitivity to cold in the hands and/or feet, accompanied by color changes in the skin, sometimes occurs in persons with Fibromyalgia. This condition is known as "Raynaudís Phenomenon".


Skin Complaints: Nagging symptoms, such as itchy, dry, or blotchy skin, may accompany FMS. Dryness of the eyes and mouth is also not uncommon. Additionally, Fibromyalgia patients may experience a sensation of swelling, particularly in extremities, like fingers. A common complaint is that a ring no longer fits on a finger. Such swelling, however, is not equivalent to the joint inflammation of arthritis; rather, it is a localized anomaly of FMS whose cause is currently unknown.


CHEST SYMPTOMS: Individuals with Fibromyalgia who engage in activities involving continuous, forward body posture (i.e., typing, sitting at a desk, etc.) often have special problems with chest and upper body pain known as "thoracic pain and dysfunction". Often accompanying the pain is shallow breathing and postural problems. Patients may also develop a condition called "costochondralgia" which involves muscle pain where the ribs meet the chest bone. Such conditions may mimic heart disease and are therefore sometimes misdiagnosed. (Note: Anyone experiencing chest pain should always consult a physician immediately. Remember that persons with Fibromyalgia can have other health problems!) Persons with Fibromyalgia are also prone to a largely asymptomatic heart condition known as mitral valve pro lapse (MVP) in which one of the valves of the heart bulges during a heartbeat causing a click or murmur. MVP usually does not cause much concern in FMS patients unless another cardiac condition is also present.


Dysequilibrium: FMS patients may be troubled by light-headedness and/or balance problems which manifest themselves in a number of ways. Since Fibromyalgia is thought to affect the skeletal tracking muscles of the eyes, nausea or "visual confusion" may be experienced when driving a car, reading a book, or otherwise tracking objects. (Difficulties with smooth muscles in the eye may also cause additional problems with focus.) Weak muscles and/or trigger points in the neck or TMJ problems in the jaw may also cause dizziness or dysequilibrium. Researchers at Johns Hopkins Medical Center have also shown that some FMS patients have a condition known as "neurally mediated hypotension" which causes a drop in blood pressure and heart rate upon standing with resulting light-headedness, nausea, and difficulty thinking clearly.


Cognitive Disorders: Persons with FMS report a number of cognitive symptoms which tend to vary from day to day. These include difficulty concentrating, "spaciness," short-term memory lapses, and being overwhelmed easily. Many Fibromyalgia patients refer to such symptoms as "Fibrofog".


LEG SENSATIONS: Some FMS patients may develop a neurologic disorder known as "restless legs syndrome" (RLS) which involves an irresistible urge to move the legs particularly when at rest or when lying down. The syndrome may also involve periodic limb movements during sleep (PLMS) which can be very disruptive to both the patient and to his/her sleeping partner.


ENVIRONMENTAL SENSITIVITY: Hypersensitivity to LIGHT, NOISE, odors, and weather patterns is common and is usually explained as being a result of the hyper vigilance seen in the nervous systems of patients with FMS. Neurogenic inflammation, a discrete, localized inflammatory response which does not activate the immune response or show up in tests, seems to play a part in the itching and rashes seen in FMS. Allergic-like reactions to a variety of substances (i.e., medications, chemicals, food additives, pollutants, etc.) are common, and patients may also experience a form of non-allergic rhinitis consisting of nasal congestion/discharge and sinus pain, but in the absence of the immunologic reactions which the body experiences in allergic conditions.


Depression And ANXIETY: Although FMS patients are frequently misdiagnosed with depression or anxiety disorders ("it's all in your head"), research has repeatedly shown that Fibromyalgia is not a form of depression or hypochondriasis. However, where depression or anxiety exist concomitant to Fibromyalgia, their treatment is important as both can exacerbate FMS and interfere with successful symptom management.

 
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Old 06-03-2004, 01:30 PM   #2
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ainfante HB Userainfante HB Userainfante HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by kc1216
Hi Ladies,

I've heard that fibro is caused by hormonal imbalances. But I am getting pretty confused. I found this and have many of these symptoms - it seems like we all do here. Let me know what you all think? I put my symptoms in CAPS. I guess I'll show this to my gastro on Monday - it's all in black and white. No cure either. Just all the meds that have been talked about on here. They did mention that 5-HTP is good for you though - anyone take it?

kc

SYMPTOMS/SYNDROMES ASSOCIATED WITH FMS

In addition to pain and fatigue, a number of allied symptoms/syndromes
are currently associated with FMS.
Patients typically experience one or more of the following:

STIFFNESS: Body stiffness may be particularly apparent UPON AWAKENING and after prolonged periods of sitting or standing in one position or coincide with changes in temperature or relative humidity.

Increased Headaches Or Facial Pain: Fibromyalgia patients may experience frequent migraine, tension, or vascular headaches. Pain may also consist of referred pain to the temporal area (temples) or behind the eyes. Approximately one-third of patients with fibromyalgia are thought to have pain and dysfunction of the temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, (located where the jaw meets the ear) which produces not only headaches but also jaw and facial pain.


SLEEP DISTURBANCES: Despite sufficient amounts of sleep, FMS patients may awaken feeling unrefreshed, as if they have barely slept. Alternatively, they may have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. Some also suffer from the condition sleep apnea. The reasons for the non-restorative sleep and other sleep difficulties of Fibromyalgia are unknown. However, early FMS research in sleep labs documented disruptions in the deep (delta) sleep of some Fibromyalgia patients.


GASTRO COMPLAINTS: Digestive disturbances, abdominal pain, and bloating are quite common in FMS as are constipation and/or diarrhea (also known as "irritable bowel syndrome" or IBS). In addition, patients may have difficulty swallowing food which research suggests is a result of objective abnormalities in smooth muscle functioning in the esophagus.


GENITO-URINARY PROBLEMS: FMS patients may experience increased frequency of urination or increased urgency to urinate, typically in the absence of a bladder infection. Some may develop a more chronic, painful inflammatory condition of the bladder wall known as "interstitial cystitis" (IC). Women with FMS may have more painful menstrual periods or experience worsening of their FMS symptoms during this time. Conditions such as vulvar vestibulitis or vulvodynia, characterized by a painful vulvar region and painful sexual intercourse, may also develop in women.


PARASTHESIA: Numbness or tingling, particularly, in the hands or feet, sometimes accompanies FMS. Also known as "paresthesia", the sensation can be described as *****ling or burning.


TEMPERATURE SENSITIVITY (I'M ALWAYS COLD): Persons with Fibromyalgia tend to be highly sensitive to ambient temperature. Some often feel abnormally cold (compared to others around them) while others feel abnormally warm. An unusual sensitivity to cold in the hands and/or feet, accompanied by color changes in the skin, sometimes occurs in persons with Fibromyalgia. This condition is known as "Raynaudís Phenomenon".


Skin Complaints: Nagging symptoms, such as itchy, dry, or blotchy skin, may accompany FMS. Dryness of the eyes and mouth is also not uncommon. Additionally, Fibromyalgia patients may experience a sensation of swelling, particularly in extremities, like fingers. A common complaint is that a ring no longer fits on a finger. Such swelling, however, is not equivalent to the joint inflammation of arthritis; rather, it is a localized anomaly of FMS whose cause is currently unknown.


CHEST SYMPTOMS: Individuals with Fibromyalgia who engage in activities involving continuous, forward body posture (i.e., typing, sitting at a desk, etc.) often have special problems with chest and upper body pain known as "thoracic pain and dysfunction". Often accompanying the pain is shallow breathing and postural problems. Patients may also develop a condition called "costochondralgia" which involves muscle pain where the ribs meet the chest bone. Such conditions may mimic heart disease and are therefore sometimes misdiagnosed. (Note: Anyone experiencing chest pain should always consult a physician immediately. Remember that persons with Fibromyalgia can have other health problems!) Persons with Fibromyalgia are also prone to a largely asymptomatic heart condition known as mitral valve pro lapse (MVP) in which one of the valves of the heart bulges during a heartbeat causing a click or murmur. MVP usually does not cause much concern in FMS patients unless another cardiac condition is also present.


Dysequilibrium: FMS patients may be troubled by light-headedness and/or balance problems which manifest themselves in a number of ways. Since Fibromyalgia is thought to affect the skeletal tracking muscles of the eyes, nausea or "visual confusion" may be experienced when driving a car, reading a book, or otherwise tracking objects. (Difficulties with smooth muscles in the eye may also cause additional problems with focus.) Weak muscles and/or trigger points in the neck or TMJ problems in the jaw may also cause dizziness or dysequilibrium. Researchers at Johns Hopkins Medical Center have also shown that some FMS patients have a condition known as "neurally mediated hypotension" which causes a drop in blood pressure and heart rate upon standing with resulting light-headedness, nausea, and difficulty thinking clearly.


Cognitive Disorders: Persons with FMS report a number of cognitive symptoms which tend to vary from day to day. These include difficulty concentrating, "spaciness," short-term memory lapses, and being overwhelmed easily. Many Fibromyalgia patients refer to such symptoms as "Fibrofog".


LEG SENSATIONS: Some FMS patients may develop a neurologic disorder known as "restless legs syndrome" (RLS) which involves an irresistible urge to move the legs particularly when at rest or when lying down. The syndrome may also involve periodic limb movements during sleep (PLMS) which can be very disruptive to both the patient and to his/her sleeping partner.


ENVIRONMENTAL SENSITIVITY: Hypersensitivity to LIGHT, NOISE, odors, and weather patterns is common and is usually explained as being a result of the hyper vigilance seen in the nervous systems of patients with FMS. Neurogenic inflammation, a discrete, localized inflammatory response which does not activate the immune response or show up in tests, seems to play a part in the itching and rashes seen in FMS. Allergic-like reactions to a variety of substances (i.e., medications, chemicals, food additives, pollutants, etc.) are common, and patients may also experience a form of non-allergic rhinitis consisting of nasal congestion/discharge and sinus pain, but in the absence of the immunologic reactions which the body experiences in allergic conditions.


Depression And ANXIETY: Although FMS patients are frequently misdiagnosed with depression or anxiety disorders ("it's all in your head"), research has repeatedly shown that Fibromyalgia is not a form of depression or hypochondriasis. However, where depression or anxiety exist concomitant to Fibromyalgia, their treatment is important as both can exacerbate FMS and interfere with successful symptom management.
wow, I have alot of these! I heard FM can come about after a car accident, had that and also after serious trauma, had that many times too. But what do you do, go to the doctor and say "can you check and see if I have FM?"

Not sure how to direct this to a doctor.

Andrea

 
Old 06-03-2004, 01:45 PM   #3
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Posts: 433
kc1216 HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

I've been looking to find out - says it is hard to find a really good doc who understands this. From what I've read - you take the ibs meds for ibs, the depression meds for depression and anxiety, the bladder meds for the bladder, the tylenol for the pain and yada yada yada so you're just as good seeing different specialists since there isn't one good med for all these symtoms. Isn't it interesting AND confusing though?!

 
Old 06-03-2004, 02:55 PM   #4
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twanger HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

The majority of fibro sufferers are women. Noone knows what causes it although there are a lot of theories. Due to the fact that it occurs in women who are in their teens and is not prevalent in older years, several female physicians feel that fibro is a hormonal problem. In fact, most of the symptoms of fibro are very similar to those of pre/post menopause. Also, it has been demonstrated that a diet that eliminates carbohydrates helps with fibro in addition to balancing the hormones. These two entities can coexist. Therefore, it is extremely difficult to tell the difference sometimes. There are tests to diagnose fibro as there are pressure or trigger points that can cause alot of the misery, including: irritable bladder, IC, IBS, TMJ, and many other aches and pains. I have found that these two conditions occur at the same time in women. " Screaming to be Heard" is the book that demonstrates this very well. I can't remember the author at present. Brain fog has set in.

 
Old 06-03-2004, 03:13 PM   #5
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snodove HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

KC , my sister in law has it. It really gets her down. I think my husband may have it but they have never said but he has lot of symptoms. The pressure points too. Tired,achy ect. He was going to a R.A. Doctor but they didnt help him much so he stopped going. I hope that isn't what you have.
I want to try to be more postive. I had been hurting so much in my side and such it was making me depressed. It is good to be able to relate to others here.
Thanks, Polly

 
Old 06-03-2004, 03:33 PM   #6
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ainfante HB Userainfante HB Userainfante HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by kc1216
I've been looking to find out - says it is hard to find a really good doc who understands this. From what I've read - you take the ibs meds for ibs, the depression meds for depression and anxiety, the bladder meds for the bladder, the tylenol for the pain and yada yada yada so you're just as good seeing different specialists since there isn't one good med for all these symtoms. Isn't it interesting AND confusing though?!
I don't think we have FM. We just have a bad case of Peri. Really. Peri and anxiety, totally normal. Now take deep breathes!

Andrea

 
Old 06-03-2004, 04:08 PM   #7
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Join Date: Oct 2003
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molly123 HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

Hi KC,
A while back, I also thought I had fibro. I had some of the symptoms you listed. Now I know I never had it. I still wake up with aches but it goes away after I'm up for a while. Now, don't be thinking that you have this!! You know how some of us can start imagining we have everything that is out there!! I think that if you had FM, you would be in extreme pain!

I read that it is hard to diagnose Fibro but one test they do is touching certain spots on your body. If you have it, you would jump and scream at even a light touch. Think there are 9 or 11 points on your body. A friend of mine has it and she said you would know if you had it - you would be in debilitated, in CONSTANT pain EVERYDAY, EVERY MINUTE...and you would scream at a light touch even. Do your symptoms come and go? I think it is peri-meno you are going through....it's just so horrible that you start thinking you have something else.

Molly

 
Old 06-03-2004, 04:15 PM   #8
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Re: Fibromyalgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by molly123
Hi KC,
A while back, I also thought I had fibro. I had some of the symptoms you listed. Now I know I never had it. I still wake up with aches but it goes away after I'm up for a while. Now, don't be thinking that you have this!! You know how some of us can start imagining we have everything that is out there!! I think that if you had FM, you would be in extreme pain!

I read that it is hard to diagnose Fibro but one test they do is touching certain spots on your body. If you have it, you would jump and scream at even a light touch. Think there are 9 or 11 points on your body. A friend of mine has it and she said you would know if you had it - you would be in debilitated, in CONSTANT pain EVERYDAY, EVERY MINUTE...and you would scream at a light touch even. Do your symptoms come and go? I think it is peri-meno you are going through....it's just so horrible that you start thinking you have something else.

Molly
Right on the point, Molly.

 
Old 06-03-2004, 04:32 PM   #9
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molly123 HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by ainfante
Right on the point, Molly.
Hey Andrea,
I'm curious ....do you work? LOL! I see you posting all the time! I'm suppose to be working ..but it is so much more fun reading all these posts! Hope you're doing well!!!!

Molly

 
Old 06-03-2004, 05:13 PM   #10
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sunshine123 HB Usersunshine123 HB Usersunshine123 HB Usersunshine123 HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

I have most of the symptoms too and still haven't been diagnosed with Fibro. I asked my Internist if menopause could cause the aches and pains and he said no. I'm in pain a lot, especially when I get up in the morning. I have lots of pain in my fingers and toes. One Rheumy I saw said Fibro doesn't affect the hands, but I've read posts from sufferers and many of them have pain in their hands. I don't have fatigue even though I never sleep well. I hope my symptoms are hormonal so that maybe one of these yrs. I'll actually feel better!!!!!

 
Old 06-03-2004, 05:30 PM   #11
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Re: Fibromyalgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by molly123
Hey Andrea,
I'm curious ....do you work? LOL! I see you posting all the time! I'm suppose to be working ..but it is so much more fun reading all these posts! Hope you're doing well!!!!

Molly
Yes, I work. I work from home. I'm an insurance agent in Chicago.
Hope all is well with you. I just like hanging out here, it's making me feel better. Totally.

Andrea

 
Old 06-04-2004, 07:48 AM   #12
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kc1216 HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

Hi everyone,

I'm going to try to keep this fribo thing out of my mind for now I was on a roll yesterday and am getting so darn confused - sometimes I just dwell on everything. I can't remember when I was 100%, ya know?

As for the pressure points, I found them on the net and poked myself and I'm still breathing! hahahahahaha!

But it sure does mimic peri symptoms, huh?

Thank God nobody is at the office today - they'd really be rolling watching me poke myself. I got laughed at last week for having a tape measurer around my head - I was measuring myself for a new mc helmet.

I work outside the home and post ALOT on here - maybe too much but hey, so long as I get my work done, it's not hurting anyone and besides, this board calms me down.

kc

 
Old 06-04-2004, 10:10 AM   #13
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Re: Fibromyalgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by kc1216
Hi everyone,

I'm going to try to keep this fribo thing out of my mind for now I was on a roll yesterday and am getting so darn confused - sometimes I just dwell on everything. I can't remember when I was 100%, ya know?

As for the pressure points, I found them on the net and poked myself and I'm still breathing! hahahahahaha!

But it sure does mimic peri symptoms, huh?

Thank God nobody is at the office today - they'd really be rolling watching me poke myself. I got laughed at last week for having a tape measurer around my head - I was measuring myself for a new mc helmet.

I work outside the home and post ALOT on here - maybe too much but hey, so long as I get my work done, it's not hurting anyone and besides, this board calms me down.

kc
That's right! Post as many times and at all times, if you choose. I do and feel good about it. The more I talk to people like myself, the stronger I become. No, we don't have FM. I thought maybe that's what I had a year or so ago cause I had such a severe car accident. I get alot of neck and back pain but also have disk injuries. Peri wth anxiety is a hard thing at times to get a gtip on, but we'll beat it, girlfriend. Enjoy the bike rides. I use to love to ride, would clear my head. Now, if I were to get on one and begin to think to clear my head, I would probably have an anxiety attack, LOL Ok, we need to live for the moment. LOL

Andrea

 
Old 06-04-2004, 11:23 AM   #14
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kc1216 HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

Had an attack on the bike the other day - we were on some windy pretty country road and my husband is a very careful driver but I kept thinking about oncoming cars - what if they went in our lane - I NEVER used to do this. so I dig in my pocket as we are doing about 60 and try to find the tiny little xanax along with my other meds in a tiny little bottle. Finally got it and slammed it down my mouth. I carry those wherever I go now. What a sight I was.

kc

 
Old 06-04-2004, 11:27 AM   #15
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molly123 HB User
Re: Fibromyalgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by kc1216
Hi everyone,

I'm going to try to keep this fribo thing out of my mind for now I was on a roll yesterday and am getting so darn confused - sometimes I just dwell on everything. I can't remember when I was 100%, ya know?

As for the pressure points, I found them on the net and poked myself and I'm still breathing! hahahahahaha!

But it sure does mimic peri symptoms, huh?

Thank God nobody is at the office today - they'd really be rolling watching me poke myself. I got laughed at last week for having a tape measurer around my head - I was measuring myself for a new mc helmet.

I work outside the home and post ALOT on here - maybe too much but hey, so long as I get my work done, it's not hurting anyone and besides, this board calms me down.

kc
Hi KC,

Good girl! No more thinking that you have fibro! FM does not mimic peri symptoms...it's the other way around I think ...peri-symptoms mimic every disease out there! LOL!

I agree, as long as you get your work done, who cares! I remember a boss of mine complained that a co-worker and I talked too much BUT he couldn't understand how we got the work done! I asked him what was the problem then...we ended up writing notes to each other....just like in grammar school! LOL!

Molly

 
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