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Posts Tagged ‘what is fibromyalgia’

3 Fibromyalgia Pain Types

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

 

 

What is fibromyalgia, and what type of pain symptoms does it cause? Unlike other types of chronic pain, fibromyalgia includes a wide variety of seemingly-unrelated debilitating ailments.

3 Fibromyalgia Pain Types- B12 Patch

If you suffer from arthritis, then you experience joint stiffness and muscle pain in certain targeted areas of the body. Likewise, people with chronic headaches suffer intense head pain and several other physical complaints.

Fibromyalgia, on the other hand, is more like a full-frontal assault on the body, by the body; an autoimmune condition in which you experience multiple types of chronic pain symptoms in various “hot spots” around the body.

There are three specific types of pain symptoms associated with fibromyalgia; they include:

Hyperalgesia

Hyperalgesia is defined as increased sensitivity to pain, resulting from peripheral nerve damage (peripheral neuropathy). With fibromyalgia, you typically experience pain on a much deeper level than others, as your reaction to pain is more severe, amplified by over-reactive nerve cells.

Causes of hyperalgesia may include severe vitamin B12 deficiency, as vitamin B12 is crucial for sustaining healthy neurological functioning, especially where the peripheral nervous system is concerned.

To ensure proper neurological health with fibromyalgia, it’s crucial to maintain normal vitamin B12 levels at all times.

Allodynia

Allodynia is severe pain caused by a normally-nonirritating stimulus that only affects the sufferer.

With fibromyalgia, you have difficulty finding comfortable clothes and sleeping restfully at night under heavy blankets, primary because allodynia makes certain tactile sensations unbearable. Scratchy shirt tags, tight waistbands, and itchy sweaters can be torture for somebody with severe allodynia.

For tips on dressing with fibromyalgia pain, read Choosing Pain-Free Clothes with Fibromyalgia

In addition to tactile hypersensitivity, you may also experience fibromyalgia pain resulting from non-severe hot or cold temperatures.

Paresthesia

Paresthesia is painful numbness and prickling sensations, usually in the hands and feet, also resulting from peripheral neuropathy.

If it seems like your arms and legs are constantly falling asleep, and you feel “pins and needles” while sitting, then it could be peripheral neuropathy.

Paresthesia is also one of the earliest symptoms of vitamin B12 deficiency, as well as a common type of fibromyalgia pain. For that reason, doctors often fail to catch low vitamin B12 levels in fibromyalgia patients.

Since vitamin B12 deficiency is often a comorbid condition of fibromyalgia, doctors recommend checking your vitamin B12 levels regularly, in order to prevent severe depletion of vitamin B12.

Your turn!

Do you suffer from fibromyalgia, in addition to vitamin B12 deficiency? If so, what advice can you offer our readers?

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

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Like this? Read more:

Vitamin B12 Deficiency and Fibromyalgia Pain Types

Can Vitamin B12 Repair Nerve Cells?

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Sources:

Understanding Fibromyalgia Pain

Image(s) courtesy of Ambro/FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia- Is there a Difference?

Thursday, December 15th, 2011

 

 

What’s the difference between fibromyalgia (FM) and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)? Health experts often differ in diagnosing fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue symptoms, as they tend to overlap.  Judge for yourself- here are some facts on symptoms of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome.

CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME AND FIBROMYALGIA- IS THERE A DIFFERENCE? WWW.B12PATCH.COM

What is fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia (FM) is a condition that causes pain, tiredness, and stomach upset in its sufferers.  FM is somewhat of a medical phenomenon, as scientists are still unsure exactly what causes fibromyalgia.  Theories abound, and researchers continue to conduct studies on possible causes of fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia symptoms:

The most prevalent symptom of fibromyalgia is chronic pain: About 70% – 80% of fibromyalgia patients suffer severe muscular soreness.  Pain occurs mostly along the spine, the shoulders, hips, and neck, but can also happen in other parts of the body.  FM sufferers may also experience joint stiffness similar to arthritis pain.

  • Other common symptoms of fibromyalgia are gastrointestinal disorders (diarrhea), severe fatigue, sleep difficulties, and “brain fog” (concentration problems).
  • According to the U.S. Centers for Disease and Prevention, approximately five million US citizens suffer from fibromyalgia.
  • In order to diagnose fibromyalgia, a doctor must confirm eleven out of eighteen fibromyalgia “tender points” in his patient.
  • More women than men suffer from fibromyalgia.

CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME AND FIBROMYALGIA- IS THERE A DIFFERENCE? WWW.B12PATCH.COM

Fibromyalgia FAQs- 6 Need-to-Know Fibro Facts

Why am I always tired?

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) goes by a few other names: immune dysfunction syndrome (CFIDS) and myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME).  CFS is another “invisible disease” that affects the body and the mind.  Like fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome is also an illness for which scientists are still attempting to determine the cause.  The leading theory is that CFS is an autoimmune disorder of the central nervous system.

Boost Energy Now! 20 Practical Tips for Fighting Fatigue

What are the symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome?

While fibromyalgia symptoms center on pain, CFS symptoms are primarily related to extreme unending tiredness.  Symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome include:

  • CHRONIC FATIGUE SYNDROME AND FIBROMYALGIA- IS THERE A DIFFERENCE? WWW.B12PATCH.COMbeing tired all the time, despite getting plenty of sleep, eating well, and generally taking good care of yourself,
  • complete exhaustion after low-impact exercise, examinations, or long periods requiring mental focus, followed by a recuperation period,
  • poor short-term memory,
  • brain fog,
  • waking up fatigued, and never feeling fully rested,
  • flu-like aches and pain,
  • headache,
  • sore throat,
  • poor reading comprehension,
  • difficulty grasping appropriate words while communicating,
  • anxiety

What’s the difference between CFS and FM?

The fact that symptoms of chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia so often overlap makes it difficult for doctors to diagnose, and confusing for patients to understand.  Here are some basic similarities and distinguishing facts of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome:

  • Not all people who have chronic fatigue syndrome also suffer from chronic pain symptoms such as those with fibromyalgia.  However, most fibromyalgia patients live with extreme, persistent fatigue every day- approximately 50% – 70%, according to the Arthritis Foundation.
  • About one million people have chronic fatigue syndrome, compared with five million fibromyalgia sufferers.
  • While some physicians believe that fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome are two separate conditions that often overlap in one patient, others believe that chronic fatigue is one of many symptoms of fibromyalgia syndrome, and not a disorder in its own right.
  • Stress and physical exertion are both common triggers of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome symptoms.

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

Vitamin B12 deficiency in fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue

Other illnesses share similar symptoms with FM and CFS, causing yet more confusion in diagnosis and treatment.  Additionally, other conditions like pernicious anemia may occur at the same time as CFS, and may go undetected as a result.

  • A high correlation exists between vitamin B12 deficiency and fibromyalgia.  Any condition that causes gastrointestinal problems will likely also result in poor digestion of vitamin B12.  Untreated, B12 deficiency can escalate into severe nerve damage.
  • Symptoms of B12 deficiency may include nerve pain (tingling, pins and needles) in the hands and feet, numbness in the hands and feet, decreased energy, loss of mental focus, fatigue, depression, anxiety, sore tongue, altered sense of taste, short-term memory loss, clumsiness, and difficulty walking, running or jumping without stumbling.
  • Other disorders and illnesses linked with vitamin B12 deficiency are inflammatory bowel disease (IBD- Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis), lupus, heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, autism, celiac disease, osteoporosis, and diabetes.
  • Because vitamin B12 deficiency shares so many symptoms with chronic fatigue syndrome, it might go untreated.  For that reason, it is advisable for people suffering from CFS or FM to get their vitamin B12 blood levels checked routinely.

Read more about fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome:

Back Pain Exercises and Fibromyalgia- the Do’s and Don’ts

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

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

Sources:

The Fibro Fact Page: Basic Brief Information about Fibromyalgia

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

What is Chronic Fatigue Syndrome?

The CFIDS Association of America

Image credits:

Stuart Miles

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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