It’s hard to describe fibromyalgia (FMS) pain, as there are so many different ways that it affects your body. Nerve pain from vitamin B12 deficiency, which occurs often with fibromyalgia, causes numbness and sharp “pins and needles” sensations. Being able to explain fibromyalgia pain to your doctor is essential for finding the right therapy. Here are some clues to help you identify the type of fibromyalgia symptoms you’re experiencing.
Hyperalgesia fibromyalgia pain
Hyperalgesia refers to a hyperactive response to pain (algesia). With fibromyalgia, pain signals are amplified. What would normally score a “2” on the pain Richter scale for others might peak to a “5” or “6” for a fibromyalgia patient. This occurs as a result of nerve cells that overreact to pain triggers.
RX: Drugs like Lyrica and Cymbalta are often prescribed to treat nerve pain from fibromyalgia. Vitamin B12 is also helpful for preventing destruction of nerve cells.
Allodynia fibromyalgia pain
Similar to Hyperalgesia, allodynia is also an overreaction to sensors that causes immense nerve pain. Only instead of amplifying common pain triggers, allodynia produces a pain response to mild sensations such as the touch of a wool blanket or a chill breeze.
Tactile allodynia can feel like sunburn. Only instead of being caused by overexposure to the sun’s rays, it can be triggered by gentle pressure, such as a snug blouse.
Mechanical allodynia is similar, but caused by movement over your skin, such as a backrub.
Thermal allodynia is a pain response to moderate hot or cold temperatures.
Other people who may suffer from allodynia are people with peripheral neuropathy, such as occurs in pernicious anemia from vitamin B12 deficiency, a comorbid condition with fibromyalgia.
RX: Topical lotions like Tiger Balm and capsaicin may provide temporary relief from allodynia pain. Prescription drugs may include Tramadol, Lidocaine, or morphine, depending on the pain severity.
It’s worth noting that if vitamin B12 deficiency occurs with fibromyalgia, long-term supplementation with vitamin B12 is required for complete treatment of nerve pain.
Paresthesia fibromyalgia pain
Paresthesia is a type of nerve pain that makes your skin “crawl.” That’s the best description that fibromyalgia patients offer to sum up the painful prickling, burning, and numbness experienced with paresthesia.
Besides fibromyalgia, other causes of paresthesia are peripheral neuropathy from vitamin B12 deficiency, multiple sclerosis, and migraines.
RX: Certain antidepressants like SSRIs and SNRIs may help to reduce paresthesia nerve pain.
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