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Posts Tagged ‘diagnose fibromyalgia’

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia: Questions to Ask your Doctor

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013

 

 

Recently, scientists discovered that fibromyalgia chronic pain symptoms stem from having too many nerve fibers. (See Finally, Proof that Fibromyalgia Isn’t Imaginary.) If you suspect you have fibromyalgia, or comorbid symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, then it’s important to ask the right questions from your doctor to get a proper diagnosis.

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia: Questions to Ask your Doctor

First, visit your GP

Fibromyalgia is still considered a pseudo-illness by many doctors, so you may have to network to find a true advocate. Start with your family doctor, and come prepared with a list of symptoms that concern you. Many of the symptoms of fibromyalgia also occur with vitamin B12 deficiency, a condition which patients of fibromyalgia are at risk for, so you should also request a blood test to check vitamin B12 levels.

Symptoms of fibromyalgia include:

  • Extreme pain in specific zones around your body (tender points)
  • Sore joints and muscles
  • Headache
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Brain fog
  • Dizziness
  • Frequent illness
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Hypersensitivity to hot and cold temperatures
  • Skin rashes, itchiness

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS)

Find a specialist

If your general practitioner is unable to help, then it may be time to get cracking and find somebody who specializes in treating fibromyalgia. Ask your doctor’s nurse, post on Facebook pages for fibromyalgia, or do a Google search for physicians in your area who specialize in chronic pain.

For your initial visit, bring along a list of questions to help you determine if you’ve found the right match. A good doctor should listen attentively to your symptoms and be up to date with the latest research surrounding fibromyalgia.

Questions to ask include:

  • What causes fibromyalgia?
  • How is fibromyalgia diagnosed?
  • What is your experience in treating patients with fibromyalgia?
  • What comorbid conditions occur with fibromyalgia?
  • Is vitamin B12 deficiency a problem with fibromyalgia? Should I check my vitamin B12 levels?
  • What medications will you prescribe if I’m diagnosed?
  • Do you endorse any natural supplements or alternative therapies to help reduce symptoms of fibromyalgia?

Your turn!

Do you have any questions or suggestions?  Please leave your comments below.

Share with your friends!

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Like this? Read more:

Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Fibromyalgia Pain Types

Choosing Pain-Free Clothes with Fibromyalgia

How to Tell if Chronic Pain is Fibromyalgia: 18 Pressure Points

Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

Has pain become a constant unwanted visitor in your life?

When your doctor asks you, “Where does it hurt,” are you tempted to say, “Everywhere!”

What is fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia, often linked with Vitamin B12 deficiency (National Institutes of Health), is a condition which causes sufferers to feel chronic pain in various parts of the body at all times. According to the American College of Rheumatology, symptoms of fibromyalgia include severe pain in at least 11 points of the body which doctors access in order to diagnose fibromyalgia.

These 9 pairs of pressure points on your body are are used by physicians to determine a fibromyalgia diagnosis:

  • Pain on either side of the back of the neck could indicate fibromyalgia; neck pain might also be caused by sleeping in an awkward position or by rheumatoid arthritis.
  • The front of the neck is another hot spot for fibromyalgia pain; potential sufferers may feel pain above the collarbone and adjacent to the larynx
  • .Tender spots below the bend of your elbows towards the outside of your forearms are typical for fibromyalgia patients; tendonitis or repetitive motions may also cause elbow pain.
  • Fibromyalgia patients often feel pain in the lower hip areas, close to the buttock muscles, while arthritis patients typically experience pain at the joints of the hips.

  • Approximately 25% of all adults experience lower back pain. Individuals diagnosed with fibromyalgia feel their back pain at the lowest point where the spine adjoins with the buttock muscles.
  • Most people experience upper back pain every once in a while as a result of stress or injury; people with fibromyalgia experience extreme discomfort at the points where the shoulder blades connect with the back muscles.
  • Above the upper back area, where the shoulders meet the lower neck, are some more troublesome tender spots for fibromyalgia patients.
  • Fibromyalgia patients who suffer from knee aches tend to feel tenderness in the inner knee pad areas.
  • Soreness in the chest area, on either side of the sternum, is another telltale sign that somebody might  require fibromyalgia treatment.

Sources:

Health.com, American College of Rheumatology, National Institutes of Health

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