Fibromyalgia Causes and Symptoms

The Causes and Associated Conditions of Fibromyalgia

Many patients come into our clinic each year seeking fibromyalgia pain relief. No one is sure what causes fibromyalgia, but there are a number of conditions that often occur with fibromyalgia or mimic the symptoms of the condition. These include:

  • Chronic fatique syndrome
  • Sleep disorders
  • Chronic back and neck pain
  • Lyme disease
  • Depression
  • Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)

The symptoms of fibromyalgia can be triggered (or potentially caused) by factors such as:

  • Emotional or physical trauma
  • An abnormal pain response in the in brain of the patient
  • Disturbance to normal sleeping patterns
  • Infections or viruses, although this has not been confirmed or identified

The Symptoms of Fibromyalgia

The main symptom of fibromyalgia is pain. It can range from severe to relatively mild. Patients might experience pain in localized areas, called tender points. These tender points most commonly occur in areas of the body such as:

  • Neck
  • Knees
  • Shoudlers
  • Elbows
  • Chest
  • Hipes
  • Lower Back
  • Shins

Pain might radiate from those locations, ranging from an ache to a shooting pain. Usually, the joints are unaffected although the radiating pain might make them feel sore. Sleeping often becomes an issue for those suffering from fibromyalgia pain, as they may awake with body aches and stiffness. Some patients report that their pain gets better during the day but more intense at night, but other patients experience pain throughout the day. Factors such as the weather and stress can make the pain worse.

Other symptoms of fibromyalgia may include:

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Palpitations
  • Reduced ability to exercise
  • Memory and concentration problems
  • Tension or migraine headaches
  • Numbness and tingling in hands and feet

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