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Posts Tagged ‘fibromyalgia fatigue’

Is it Chronic Fatigue or Fibromyalgia? Four Ways to Tell

Monday, July 25th, 2011



Most people who have fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) also suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), as the two conditions share comorbidity with each other. So, how do you to tell if you have fibro fog, chronic fatigue…or both?


About  80 to 90 percent of all chronic fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue sufferers female. Also, fibromyalgia sufferers share many of the same symptoms, such as severe chronic pain and mental exhaustion.

If that’s the case, then how does one tell the two conditions apart?

7 Reasons You Have Brain Fog…And What to do About It

Symptoms of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue

In order for you physician to diagnose CFS or FMS, you must exhibit some of the following symptoms:

  • Extreme mental fatigue
  • Muscle or joint pain
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Unusual headaches
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Forgetfulness
  • Lightheadedness

Suffering from Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue? B12 to the Rescue!

So we know what features CFS and FMS have in common, but what criteria do physicians use to tell them apart?

The basic difference is that fibromyalgia is that fibromyalgia involves specific pain points, while chronic fatigue has no rhyme or reason.

However, that’s only a rough description.


Factors that differentiate fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue

1) Statistics

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 5 million Americans suffer from fibromyalgia syndrome, compared with 1 million who suffer from chronic fatigue.  If you suspect you have one or the other, seek a fibromyalgia diagnosis first.

A rheumatologist often determines fibromyalgia, while an infectious disease specialist is more likely to diagnose CFS.

2) The substance P factor

Fibromyalgia patients have 300% more substance P, a chemical that your brain uses to spread pain signals throughout your body.  The more substance P your body emits following an injury, the stronger your body’s reaction to pain.

If you have fibromyalgia, then you suffer three times the amount of muscular pain or joint aches than people who don’t have chronic illness.

3) It’s in the zone

There are approximately 18 distinct pain points throughout body that signal fibromyalgia syndrome.  To receive a diagnosis, fibromyalgia sufferers must exhibit soreness in at least 11 of these specified zones.  Conversely, chronic fatigue patients have no connection with the 18 pain points.

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

4) Chronic fatigue is viral

Chronic fatigue syndrome patients have higher levels of an antiviral enzyme, RNase L, leading experts to believe that CFS is the result of an autoimmune disorder following exposure to a virus.

While fibromyalgia often begins following an emotional trauma or physical injury, CFS generally appears because of a viral infection, like mono or the flu.  Chronic fatigue sufferers often complain of residual flu-like symptoms and sore throat, in addition to exhaustion following physical exercise.  CFS patients feel tired all day, even after sleeping a full eight hours.

Related reading:

100 Best Sites for Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue Information

Staying Fit with Fibromyalgia: 13 Pain-Free Workouts

Why More Fibromyalgia Patients are Taking Tai Chi

15 Handy Household Tools for Chronic Pain Sufferers

Best Clothes for Fibromyalgia Pain- 6 Helpful Dressing Tips


The Common Threads of Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – Fibromyalgia Center – Everyday Health

Difference Between Fibromyalgia and Chronic fatigue syndrome | Difference Between |  Fibromyalgia vs Chronic fatigue syndrome

What is the difference between fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue?

Suffering from Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue? B12 to the Rescue!

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011



Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue affect 5 million Americans. While there are no cures for fibromyalgia, many sufferers benefit by supplementing with vitamin B12, which supports cognitive balance and boosts stamina.

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


May 12th was Fibromyalgia Awareness Day. If you suffer from fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome, learn how vitamin B12 can help alleviate some of the symptoms of fibromyalgia.

What are the symptoms of fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a chronic neurological illness which causes excruciating pain and muscular weakness where no sign of injury or inflammation is apparent. Researchers are stumped as to the origin of this disease or how to cure it.

Chronic fibromyalgia pain is lifelong, and often takes a toll on job performance and relationships with friends and family. Medicine for fibromyalgia patients usually consists of pain medication, opiates or antidepressants.

Some common fibromyalgia symptoms are:

  • Chronic, widespread musculoskeletal pain
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Irritability
  • Heart palpitations
  • Short-term memory loss
  • Chronic migraines
  • Numbness and tingling in hand, arms, legs and feet
  • Nausea
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Sinus/allergy symptoms, such as runny nose, sore throat, coughing and sneezing
  • Vertigo
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Insomnia
  • Altered taste perception
  • Dry, itchy skin
  • Blurred vision
  • Obesity
  • Joint pain
  • Restless leg syndrome
  • Morning stiffness

Why More Fibromyalgia Patients are Taking Tai Chi

What is chronic fatigue syndrome?

Chronic fatigue syndrome, or CFS is a neurological disorder which causes profound exhaustion.

Unlike ordinary tiredness which can be slept off, chronic fatigue is not alleviated by sleep. Chronic fatigue syndrome shares many of the same symptoms as fibromyalgia, such as insomnia, muscular pain, headaches, sore throat and short-term memory loss.

Non-drug alternatives for chronic fatigue sufferers may include stress reduction, vitamin supplementation and physical therapy.

The CFS-fibromyalgia link

Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome are both neurological conditions, and it is common for individuals suffering from chronic pain and fatigue to be diagnosed with both. Studies linking fibromyalgia with chronic fatigue have confirmed a strong correlation.

  • About 75% of all fibromyalgia patients experience extreme fatigue.
  • 94% of individuals diagnosed with chronic fatigue also report suffering from extreme muscular pain.
  • Studies linking the two conditions together have also noted that women make up the majority of both fibromyalgia pain sufferers and chronic fatigue patients.

Chronic Depression, Chronic Pain- It’s All the Same, say Experts

Vitamin B12, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue

Numerous studies have linked vitamin B12 deficiency with increased risk for fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms.

While nobody claims that vitamin B12 deficiency causes fibromyalgia, experts have nevertheless noticed improved cognitive and metabolic health when vitamin B12 shots are administered to sufferers of fibromyalgia.

Scientists have also noted low vitamin B12 levels where fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue occur, in addition to elevated levels of homocysteine, another common factor in chronic pain and vitamin B12 deficiency, and a possible risk for heart attack and stroke.

B12 Deficiency: Don’t Ignore the Symptoms

Vitamin B12 deficiency symptoms are similar to many  symptoms associated with chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia, including:

  • exhaustion
  • depression
  • insomnia
  • muscular soreness, and
  • numbness or tingling in hands and feet.

For that reason, nutritionists advise vitamin B12 as one of the most crucial supplements for sufferers of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia.

Like this? Read more:

B12 Deficiency can really Get on your Nerves

Teens are No Stranger to Chronic Fatigue

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