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What is Fibromyalgia?

What is fibromyalgia anyway?

I was recently diagnosed with fibromyalgia, also known as FM or FMS.  Before I had a name to my aches and pains, I spent months in pain trying to figure out what was wrong with me, why painkillers weren’t killing any pain, and why I went from a healthy, athletic person to a stiff chubby gal.

The diagnosis does not make me happy.  Fibromyalgia is a controversial diagnosis, since it is hard to test for it.  It is based on self-reporting, and there is lack of scientific proof about it, since the symptoms overlap with other conditions such as chronic fatigue syndrome.

Fibromyalgia comes from the greek fibro-, fibrous tissue, myo-, muscle, algos-, pain, meaning muscle and connective tissue pain.  In other words, there’s pain all over.  But instead of debating the origins of the label they put on this syndrome, I wonder what it is to live with FM, regardless of whether the scientific community thinks it exists or not.  I certainly don’t care what they think, when I know I am in pain 24/7 for no apparent reason.

Like I said previously, the diagnosis does not make me happy, but it does give me relief.  I know at least what’s wrong with me, and I am able to move on to managing the symptoms (as they are not even sure what causes it).

FMS seems to be related to high levels of stress, and is often accompanied by depression, PTSD, anxiety, and other such illnesses related to stress, like insomnia and other sleep disturbances.

There’s some scientists that think that it’s just overactive muscles acting up due to stress, but the most commonly accepted idea is that some type of brain change occurs in which pain is just interpreted as much greater than it really is by the brain.

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