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Posts Tagged ‘fibromyalgia symptoms’

Vitamin B12 for Fibromyalgia- How Much do you Need?

Friday, May 3rd, 2013

 

 

To keep providing energy, strength, and mental focus when fibromyalgia relapses occur, you need to nourish your body with many essential nutrients, including vitamin B12. Taking vitamin B12 supplements is a crucial part of any fibromyalgia management regimen, but it’s important to also get plenty of vitamins from the foods you eat.

Vitamin B12 for Fibromyalgia- How Much do you Need?

To manage fibromyalgia symptoms such as brain fog, vitamin B12 deficiency, muscle aches, and chronic fatigue, it’s important to make sure you’re getting enough vitamin B12, and sustaining normal levels of vitamin B12 in your blood supply.

Also read Vitamin B12 for Fibromyalgia- Food Sources!

Vitamin B12 malabsorption

Vitamin B12 malabsorption is common in people with fibromyalgia, because of gastrointestinal disorders that prevent you from digesting proper amounts vitamin B12 from the foods you eat.

To maintain healthy vitamin B12 levels, you would need to take about 1,000mcg of vitamin B12 weekly, the amount of vitamin B12 included in a typical vitamin B12 shot or other non-dietary B12 supplement.

Comparatively speaking, that’s about 11 servings of cooked clams each week, just to prevent developing severe pernicious anemia.

To avoid symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency anemia that mimic fibromyalgia- fatigue, dizziness, anxiety, depression, and muscle pain- you would have to consume many times more than the suggested dosage of vitamin B12 from foods such as clams, crabs, oysters, and other types of seafood.

How much B12 do you need?

There’s no upper limit set for vitamin B12 supplementation- any amount you decide to take is completely safe and cannot cause any side effects, according to FDA guidelines.

Generally, in the case of vitamin B12 malabsorption with fibromyalgia, the more vitamin B12 you take, the better off you are. There doesn’t seem to be any amount of vitamin B12 that is “too much.”

More often, the amount of vitamin B12 you get from prescription supplements such as vitamin B12 shots are often not enough to relieve symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, such as constant tiredness, difficulty concentrating, memory loss, or painful tingling and numbness in the hands and feet.

To get the most vitamin B12, it’s important to eat plenty of foods rich in vitamin B12, in addition to also maintaining a routine of vitamin B12 supplementation, adjusting the regimen until you find the right amount of vitamin B12 to prevent symptoms.

Your turn!

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

Share with your friends!

If you found this article helpful, then please share with your friends, family, and coworkers by email, twitter, or Facebook.

Like this? Read more:

What Causes Vitamin B12 Malabsorption?

Shocking Must-See Video on Vitamin B12 Deficiency Crisis

Can Vitamin B12 Repair Nerve Cells?

Image courtesy of Piyachok Thawornmat/freedigitalphotos/

In the Search for a Fibromyalgia Doctor, Start Here

Thursday, June 7th, 2012

 

 

If you suffer from fibromyalgia, then you need a doctor who specializes in chronic pain. When choosing a fibromyalgia doctor, it’s important to ask the right questions from the get-go. Here are some helpful tips for finding a fibromyalgia doctor that meets your expectations.

IN THE SEARCH FOR A FIBROMYALGIA DOCTOR, START HERE

Fibromyalgia is hard, finding a doctor is harder…

Fibromyalgia is an autoimmune disorder that triggers excruciating muscle pain in its sufferers, in addition to other symptoms like brain fog, fatigue, diarrhea, nausea, and numbness.  Since fibromyalgia is an oft-misunderstood disease, finding the appropriate treatment requires an expert opinion from a doctor who specializes in fibromyalgia.

To find such a physician, you will have to ask many questions, learn your way around a lot of hospital red tape, and be your own best fibro advocate.

Start with your general practitioner

Once you’ve affirmed that your GP is not qualified to treat fibromyalgia, as will most certainly be the case, ask him if he can refer you to a specialist who takes only patients suffering from fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

IN THE SEARCH FOR A FIBROMYALGIA DOCTOR, START HERE

 

Network

Your doctor is out there, so go find him! You’ll need to get over any shyness you might have about talking to strangers if you’re going to get the help you need to deal with fibromyalgia pain and find relief.

Whenever you visit the hospital, ask the admittance nurse if she can refer you to a fibromyalgia doctor.

Ask your doctor’s nurses and receptionist, as well.

Chronically Pained? Here’s your Essential Chronic Pain Checklist…

Ask your parents, uncles, or aunts if they know of any relatives who have fibromyalgia.

Inquire at work or at your child’s school.

Are you a member of any online forums of Facebook communities for fibromyalgia and chronic pain? Post that you’re looking for a fibromyalgia doctor, and see how many responses you get!

Make a list

Before you go for your initial consultation, prepare a checklist of questions for your doctor. Some good questions to ask are:

•What exactly is fibromyalgia? (See how he responds.)

•What tests do you use to diagnose fibromyalgia?

•How many fibromyalgia patients have you treated?

•What are your credentials for treating fibromyalgia?

•What medications do you frequently prescribe for fibromyalgia pain symptoms?

•What’s your opinion on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM)?

•I’ve heard that vitamin B12 deficiency is common with fibromyalgia- do you also treat comorbid conditions?

15 Chronic Pain Causes and 15 Treatments (Vitamin B12 is one)

IN THE SEARCH FOR A FIBROMYALGIA DOCTOR, START HERE

Keep looking

If you’re currently seeing a fibromyalgia doctor, but you’re unhappy with the care (or lack of care) you’re getting, then don’t hesitate to find somebody else.

A competent fibromyalgia specialist should be able to formulate a treatment that is tailor-made for you, that treats you as a whole person, not just a sum of fibro symptoms.

Sticking with a doctor that doesn’t address your physical, neurological, and emotional needs is counterproductive in lifelong management of fibromyalgia disorder.

Please tell us…

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

Share with your friends!

If you found this article helpful, then please share with your friends, family, and coworkers by email, Facebook, or Google+.

You might also like:

9 Conditions that Mimic Fibromyalgia and Vitamin B12 Deficiency

10 Celebrities with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Sources:

Treating Fibromyalgia: Finding a Doctor You Can Work With

How to Choose a Doctor

Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I have Fibromyalgia…Which Supplements should I take?

Thursday, February 16th, 2012

 

 

Fibromyalgia is an autoimmune disorder that causes chronic pain, fatigue, and gastrointestinal problems.  People with fibromyalgia symptoms experience excruciating muscular soreness in the absence of visible inflammation.  In addition to taking prescribed medications for fibromyalgia, you should also include natural supplements for optimal health.

I have Fibromyalgia…Which Supplements should I take?

Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)

If your body had a battery, Vitamin B1 would be the juice that keeps you ticking.  Vitamin B1 helps your body manufacture adenosine triphosphate, or ATP, an essential molecule that gives your body the energy it needs to keep your heart pumping and your lungs breathing.

Dose: For fibromyalgia, Crohn’s disease and folate deficiency, take at least 200 mg of thiamin per day for optimum health.

Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin)

Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin that is only found in protein foods like meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and cheese.  Your body needs vitamin B12 for red blood cell circulation, nervous system maintenance, DNA synthesis, healthy cognitive functioning, and energy production.

If you have fibromyalgia, then you need to watch for vitamin B12 deficiency, since gastrointestinal disorder symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting that are common with fibromyalgia, and can interfere with vitamin B12 absorption.

Symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency are constant fatigue, depression, confused thinking, painful tingling-numbness in the hands and feet, sleeplessness, frequent clumsiness and stumbling, and sore, burning tongue.

Dose: For fibromyalgia and vitamin B12 deficiency, 1000 mcg of non-dietary vitamin B12 supplements per week provide optimal health.

Also read:

Magnesium

Like vitamin B1, magnesium is another nutrient that helps your body produce ATP for energy.  Magnesium aids in muscle relaxation and keeps calcium from entering the blood supply.

Magnesium is highly recommended to relax muscular tension in people with fibromyalgia, migraine headaches, and PMS.

Dose: Take 600 mg daily for optimum health.

Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol)

Your body needs two forms of vitamin D to survive- Vitamin D2, which is manufactured by plants, and vitamin D3, which your skin produces upon exposure to sunlight.  Vitamin D aids in calcium absorption for building strong healthy bones and retaining bone mass.

Dose: For fibromyalgia and other autoimmune diseases, take 1,000 IU per day for optimum health.

Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)

DHA occurs naturally in fatty fish, and is essential for healthy brain development in infants and cognitive functioning in adults. DHA is also used successfully to life the mood and increase mental clarity in people who suffer “brain fog,” as evidenced by this study on Health benefits of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA).

Dose: For fibromyalgia, depression, rheumatoid arthritis, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), take 900 mg per day for optimum health.

D-ribose

D-ribose is a sugar that your body produces.  For people who suffer from fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue, taking extra D-ribose supplementation is helpful for boosting energy and building strong muscles.  D-ribose is also taken for improving endurance levels for sports and for muscular flexibility after strenuous workouts or with symptoms of fibromyalgia.  Additionally, D-ribose increases muscular strength for people with heart disease.

Dose: For fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and coronary artery disease, take 500 mg three times per day for optimum health.

S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe)

Pronounces samm-ee, SAMe is a compound that your body produces for various essential functions, including maintaining your immune system and accessing important brain chemicals like serotonin, melatonin, and dopamine.  If you suffer from vitamin B12 deficiency, folate deficiency or methionine deficiency, than your SAMe levels are probably low.

SAMe is healthful for people suffering from fibromyalgia symptoms such as muscular pain, chronic fatigue, and depression, according to many studies, including this double-blind study on oral S-adenosylmethionine in primary fibromyalgia.

Dose: For fibromyalgia, vitamin B12 deficiency and chronic fatigue, take 800 mg per day for optimum health.

5-Hydroxytryptophan (5-HTP)

5-HTP is a chemical that your body produces from tryptophan, which is then converted into serotonin, which your brain uses throughout the day to transmit messages within the nervous system.

5-HTP is useful for promoting good health in people with chronic depression, anxiety, sleep disorders, obesity, migraine headaches, and chronic pain associated with fibromyalgia, as evidenced by this double-blind study.

Dose: For depression and fibromyalgia pain, take between 100 to 300 mg three times daily for optimum health.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that destroys free radicals.  Vitamin E is recommended for heart health.  Other studies suggest that vitamin E supplementation might be helpful for people with restless legs syndrome, immune disorder, and chronic pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis, peripheral neuropathy, and fibromyalgia.

Dose: For fibromyalgia, take between 50 IU and 800 IU daily for optimum health.

Capsaicin (Cayenne)

Capsaicin is a natural muscle relaxant that occurs naturally in many pepper varieties, but most abundantly in cayenne pepper. Capsaicin cream is used by people with chronic pain from shingles, fibromyalgia, peripheral neuropathy, and back pain.

Dose: When desired, you may apply liberal amounts of capsaicin cream.

Melatonin

Melatonin is a natural hormone produced by the pineal gland that promotes restful sleep. Melatonin supplements are helpful for people who don’t produce enough melatonin at nighttime and suffer from sleep disorders as a result. If fibromyalgia pain is keeping you up nights and causing insomnia, taking 3 mg of melatonin ½ hour before bedtime might help you get back to a normal sleep schedule, according to this report on melatonin in patients with fibromyalgia.

Please tell us…

Do you suffer from fibromyalgia?  Have you had your vitamin B12 levels tested?  Do you currently take any natural supplements for fibromyalgia that are not listed here?  We welcome your comments!

Spread the love…

Please share this article with your friends, family, or anybody you care about!

Read more about fibromyalgia and vitamin B12 deficiency:

9 Conditions that Mimic Fibromyalgia and Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Tired of being Tired all the Time…It’s Tiring!

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia- Is there a Difference?

Sources:

The effect of melatonin in patients with fibromyalgia: a pilot study.

Health benefits of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)- PubMed, NCBI

Oral S-adenosylmethionine in primary fibromyalgia. Double-blind clinical evaluation- PubMed, NCBI

Double-blind study of 5-hydroxytryptophan versus placebo in the treatment of primary fibromyalgia syndrome- PubMed, NCBI

SoulStealer.co.uk

6 Degrees of Vitamin B12- B12 Deficiency and Autoimmune Disease

Thursday, October 20th, 2011

 

 

Vitamin B12 deficiency is linked with so many types of autoimmune disease; it’s almost like the game “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.” Guess what vitamin B12, IBS, cardiovascular disease, and many kinds ofchronic disease have in common…

B12 deficiency- why worry?

Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble nutrient, one of many B vitamins, that is crucial for optimum health. If you don’t get enough vitamin B12 from meat, chicken, fish, and eggs, from B12 shots, then you could suffer severe vitamin B12 deficiency, which includes symptoms such as short-term memory loss, tingling in hands and feet, chronic fatigue syndrome, and depression.  People who are at risk of developing vitamin B12 deficiency are vegans, patients of gastric bypass surgery, diabetes sufferers, individuals on heartburn medicine, and anybody with Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) or Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS). Vitamin B12 deficiency is also linked with many autoimmune diseases.

Worried about Low B12 Lab Results?

Here are 12 illnesses that are“6 degrees” away from vitamin B12 deficiency:

1) Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD) is a digestive disease that includes illnesses such as ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.  Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is one of many IBD symptoms, such as chronic diarrhea, stomach cramping, nausea, heartburn, and constipation.  IBD can cause severe damage to the intestines, including the colon. People with inflammatory bowel disease have difficulty digesting vitamins and minerals from food, which is why they must take regular vitamin supplements. Because their illness occurs in the digestive system, many IBD patients take vitamin B12 shots in order to avoid B12 deficiency, as vitamin B12 pills are ineffective.

Crohn’s- 9 Irritable Bowel Disease (IBD) Myths to Ignore

2) Celiac disease

Celiacs disease is an autoimmune disease that attacks the digestive system with the consumption of gluten.  Celiac disease symptoms include indigestion, diarrhea, malnourishment, and nausea.  Gluten intolerance symptoms occur whenever a celiac disease patient consumes a product containing gluten, a protein that occurs in wheat, rye, and barley.  Because of their difficulty digesting vitamins, celiac disease sufferers should supplement regularly with non-oral forms of vitamin B12.

Celiac Disease Tip: Gluten Free Diet plus Extra Vitamin B12

3) Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS)

Auto [fibromyalgia symptoms] [symptoms of fibromyalgia]

Fibromyalgia symptoms strike 1 in 50 Americans.  Many people don’t realize that fibromyalgia is an autoimmune disease.  Symptoms of fibromyalgia include chronic pain, fatigue, depression, insomnia, and “fibro fog” (disorientation).  Many people who suffer from fibromyalgia also exhibit signs of vitamin B12 deficiency.

Fibromyalgia FAQs- 6 Need-to-Know Fibro Facts

4) Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) is another autoimmune disease, similar to fibromyalgia, which is closely linked with vitamin B12 deficiency. Scientists have noted an extremely high correlation between all three conditions- fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, and B12 deficiency.  Symptoms of CFS are extreme tiredness upon waking up in the morning, fatigue following minimal physical exertion, achy joints, and fibro fog.

40 Things NOT to say to a Fibromyalgia-Chronic Fatigue Sufferer

5) Diabetes

Diabetics who take the drug metformin are susceptible to vitamin B12 deficiency, say scientists. Scientific studies linking low B12 levels with long-term usage of metformin indicate a 77% chance of developing peripheral neuropathy.

New Study: Diabetes Drug Metformin Causes Vitamin B12 Deficiency

6) Psychiatric disorders

[clinical depression] [anxiety disorder]

Some symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency are often misdiagnosed as psychiatric disorders, such as depression, anxiety disorder, manic depression, or paranoia.

Vitamin Deficiencies can drive you Crazy- Seriously! Part 1

7) Heartburn

Stomach acids are essential for digesting vitamin B12 naturally from food sources.  That is why people who take heartburn medication frequently, such as people with Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD) or pregnant women, must take care to avoid B12 deficiency.

The 20 Do’s and Don’ts of the GERD Diet

8) Gastric bypass

Some weight loss surgery procedures involve removing the terminal ilium, a part of the digestive system that is responsible for absorbing vitamin B12. For that reason, patients of bariatric surgery are strongly advised to supplement with non-oral vitamin B12.

10 Mistakes Gastric Bypass Patients Often Make

9) Pernicious anemia

Sometimes, vitamin B12 deficiency is caused by pernicious anemia, a condition that distorts your red blood cells and inhibits absorption of vitamin B12. Causes of pernicious anemia include autoimmune disease and gastritis.

Signs and Symptoms of 6 Types of Anemia Blood Disease

10) Cardiovascular disease

Vitamin B12, vitamin B6, and folate all work together in lowering your body’s level of homocysteine; an amino acid that scientists believe may contribute to heart disease and stroke.

B Vitamins prevent Cardiovascular Disease- B6, B12 and Folate

11) Thyroid disease

Autoimmune thyroid disease, also called Hashimoto’s disease, is an autoimmune disease that causes hypothyroidism, or an underactive thyroid gland.  There is an unusually high correlation between instances of autoimmune thyroid disease and pernicious anemia caused by vitamin B12 deficiency. Because some of the symptoms of thyroid disease mimic pernicious anemia, many doctors overlook the possibility of vitamin B12 deficiency.

12) Dementia

Vitamin B12 helps to sustain cognitive health. In many studies, scientists have noticed that elderly individuals with low levels of B12 are more likely to suffer from early onset dementia than elderly individuals who maintain adequate levels of vitamin B12.

How to keep Vitamin B12 Deficiency from Shrinking your Brain

Sources:

American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association, Inc.

Prevalence and evaluation of B12 deficiency in patients with autoimmune thyroid disease- PubMed NCBI

Peripheral neuropathy- Mayo Clinic

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

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

 

 

“Fibro Haze” isn’t an acid rock band from the 70s-  fibromyalgia brain fog is what happens when when your physical, emotional, and biochemical elements get together and decide to wreak havoc on your nervous system.

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

 

Oftentimes linked with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS), the symptoms of fibromyalgia are confusion, tiredness and forgetfulness.

Do you have trouble remembering somebody’s name about one minute after she introduced herself?

Do you often forget where you parked your car, or which side of the mall you entered from?

How’s your math- do you have trouble adding up simple calculations in your head?

When you try to read, do you get distracted by every outside noise? 

Unfortunately, there are a lot of different factors which can cause fibromyalgia and fatigue, making it all that much more difficult to get to the root of the problem.

Below are the most common causes for fibro fog:
  • 1) Insomnia: If you’re not getting enough sleep, then it’s all downhill from here. Sleep disorders make it difficult for your body to produce enough serotonin, which is important for memory. Stick to a rigid sleep schedule, and don’t spend time on the computer less than 1 hour before bedtime. Try to avoid long naps in the middle of the day; twenty minutes should be your limit. If fibromyalgia nerve pain is what’s keeping you up nights, then test out an orthopedic support pillow, test-drive a different mattress, or ask your doctor about safe, gentle sleeping aids. B12 Deficiency Linked to Cognitive Decline, and more
  • 2) Emotional upset caused by nerve pain: Chronic pain takes up a lot of your brain’s attention. It’s hard to focus on all the things that are happening around you when inside, your nerves are on red alert from constant pain signals. Some prescription pain medicines are helpful for alleviating aches. Ice compresses or heating pads are effective, as well. Many fibromyalgia sufferers are also finding that practicing tai chi helps relax their nerves and soothe muscular soreness. Why More Fibromyalgia Patients are Taking Tai Chi
  • 3) Stress, anxiety and depression: Chronic stress and anxiety attacks  lower your  immunity and tire out your nervous system. If you can’t remove yourself from a stressful situation, then learn to cope- your health depends on it. Try yoga, deep breathing, light exercise and a healthy diet. If necessary, ask your doctor about antidepressants which help to prevent panic disorder. Chronic Depression, Chronic Pain- It’s All the Same, say Experts
  • 4) History of child abuse: Recent studies have noted a strong link between people who suffer from fibromyalgia symptoms and personal history of physical or mental abuse.
  • 5) Family history: Ask your family members if chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic pain or fibromyalgia symptoms run in the family. If anything, at least it will help solve the mystery. Teens are No Stranger to Chronic Fatigue
  • 6) Diet: An increasing number of CFS and fibromyalgia patients are finding that switching to a gluten-free diet has helped reduce some of the fibromyalgia symptoms, such as stomach problems, headaches and fatigue. Try seeking out some great non-gluten breads, mixes and sweets in the health food section of your supermarket, and see what happens! Can a Gluten-Free Diet Ease Symptoms of Fibromyalgia?
  • 7) Vitamin B12 deficiency: There is a strong correlation between fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and vitamin B12 deficiency. Scientists haven’t determined exactly why this phenomenon exists, but they have proven that fibro patients who take B12 supplements experience a surge in stamina and overall well-being. Suffering from Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue? B12 to the Rescue!

Also read:

100 Best Sites for Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue Information

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

Sources:

Why More Fibromyalgia Patients are Taking Tai Chi

Thursday, April 28th, 2011

New research encourages fibromyalgia sufferers to practice tai chi for pain relief

The origin of fibromyalgia is unknown, but the painful symptoms associated with fibromyalgia are all too real. Millions of Americans suffer from fibromyalgia, a chronic pain disorder which causes sufferers to feel heightened pain responses. Fibromyalgia patients often experience severe joint and muscular pain, depression and insomnia. Pain killers and muscle relaxants offer little relief for chronic pain patients.

WHY MORE FIBROMYALGIA PATIENTS ARE TAKING TAI CHI, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

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

According to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine, fibromyalgia patients can find relief in the ancient Chinese practice of tai chi.

  • In this small study conducted by Tufts Medical Center, 33 voluntary fibromyalgia patients were given tai chi classes twice per week, while 33 other chronic pain sufferers were given simple stretching classes, also two times per week.
  • After 12 weeks, the participants who practiced tai chi reported feeling less muscular pain, were well rested, and scored better on physical fitness tests.
  • Out of the control group who took the tai chi classes, 1 out of 3 patients were able to stop taking pain medications. Only 1 out of 6 patients who took the stretching classes were able to wean off their meds.
  • Chronic pain sufferers who have difficulty participating in an aerobics or strength training class have no qualms keeping up with the slow, gentle movements characteristic of tai chi martial arts.
  • Tai chi incorporates focused breathing throughout the course which many fibromyalgia sufferers find relaxing, allowing them moments of tranquility- a luxury they seldom have an opportunity to indulge in.
  • Scientists explain that attaining a state of relaxation “raises the pain thresholds and helps break the pain cycle.”
  • The Mayo Clinic touts the benefits of tai chi for cardiovascular health and stress relief, calling it a “meditation in motion.”

WHY MORE FIBROMYALGIA PATIENTS ARE TAKING TAI CHI, WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Also read:

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

Sources:

LA Times, U.S.News & World Report, Web MD, NY Times, New England Journal of Medicine

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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