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Keep a log of flare-ups and you may be able to identify your own personal triggers. While, it is impossible to avoid all triggers of FMS symptoms, you may be able to minimize exposure to many. Stress management is an important part of treating FMS. It may benefit you to join a support group or information exchange network to keep on top of the latest research and treatments options available to persons with FMS.
Canberra Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome page - Information from Australia for people with Myalgic Encephalopathy: Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis and chronic pain.
Fibrohugs - Fibromyalgia Support - Comprehensive support site designed for the entire family, including chats, forums, interactive areas, and tons of information.
Fibromyalgia Network - Educational materials on fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).
Fibrotalk Online Support Community - Created to help people with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome connect, communicate and share their experiences with one another.
FMS-CFS Friends International - Site offers upbeat conversation, information links, research ofnFibromyalgia, FMS, CFIDS, CFS, ME and chronic pain, backpain.
Fmscenter - Information, support, stories, forums and much more about Fibromyalgia and related conditions.
Fibromyalgia - Information and support for all suffering from joint
hypermobility and Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue, as well as their families.
Message board/mailing-list as well.
The Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Resource Site - Healing resources for patients, family and friends. Disease information, as well as pain management, advocacy and newsletter resources.
We Are FMily Online Fibromyalgia Support - Up to the minute information and support for those with Fibromyalgia and their friends and families.
Important Medical Disclaimer
Material on this web site is intended for personal informational purposes only and should never be used for self- diagnosis or self- treatment.
Islets of Hope strongly recommends that you seek the advice of a medical professional for diagnosis and treatment options, or before making any changes to your current diabetes or any other medical plan.
Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS)
..."The American College of Rheumatology recognizes Fibromyalgia as a chronic condition with widespread and changing degrees of multifocal tenderness, involving the limbs and trunk. Many diabetics with nerve compression have symptoms in the arms and legs that could be confused with Fibromyalgia. Patients with diabetes may also suffer general tiredness, soreness, and muscle aches, associated with loss of energy..." Could this be Fibromyalgia?
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Symptoms of Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS)
Symptoms include pain in the soft fibrous tissues including tendons, muscles, and ligaments and profound lack of energy (fatigue). Many persons with FMS feel pain throughout the body but pain can also be localized to a particular area(s). The pain can feel like a burning, stabbing, or shooting sensation, or like an overworked or pulled muscle. Sometimes the muscles themselves will twitch.
Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS) has similar symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and some researchers believe that they are the same syndrome or may have the same epidemiology (cause, or, origin). FMS also is very similar to the problems persons with Gulf War Syndrome may experience.
The pain and level of exhaustion can be as intense as for those who suffer a very bad flu strain. Many persons with FMS report the problem is worse in the morning, or, when they use a particular muscle group repetitively.
The level of fatigue experienced by many with FMS is extreme. A person may also experience an inability to focus or concentrate as FMS patients experience what they often refer to as “brain fog.” They may feel so tired that they are unable to muster the energy to move arms and legs which feel heavy.
Common Symptoms of Fibromyalgia
Persons with FMS may experience any of the following symptoms:
Who Gets FMS?
Disorders Associated with Fibromyalgia Syndrome
As if pain and fatigue were not enough, many with FMS also have other disorders at the same time including diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, sleep disorders, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), temporomandibular joint dysfunction syndrome (TMJ).
Sleeping Disorders Associated with FMS
Important Note: Sleep apnea can also be caused by excess weight, especially around the throat or neck. If you suspect sleep apnea you should consult your physician. Sleep apnea has been associated with an increase risk for heart attack. Sleeping with head and shoulders elevated, or on one’s side (sleeping on the back is a no-no for persons with sleep apnea) helps some with this problem. Not eating after 7 p.m. each night and avoiding alcohol or sleeping aids can also help reduce sleep apnea symptoms. In some cases, surgery to remove the uvula may help alleviate severe symptoms of sleep apnea.
Other Disorders and Problems Commonly Associated with FMS
FMS Symptom Triggers
Persons with FMS report the following seem to trigger “attacks” of FMS symptoms to varying degrees:
Causes and Epidemiology of FMS
FMS is one of those disorders that may not evidence until something else triggers the underlying physiological abnormality or predisposition. No one is certain what actually causes fibromyalgia syndrome but it is suspected that it is somehow related to abnormalities in the complicated pain-related chemical mechanisms in the body.
While it is not clear what causes onset of FMS, many report the following incidents prior to the onset of their first symptoms or diagnosis of FMS:
Treatment of Fibromyalgia
Treatment of sleep disorders is vital for successful management of FMS symptoms. Sleep disorders are often treated first in FMS patients because improving the quality of sleep directly impacts levels of pain and assists the body in more naturally regulating neurotransmitters, antibody and hormone and immune system chemical production. Restful sleep also helps the body repair damaged tissues. Medication may be prescribed to boost level of serotonin and norepinephrine.
Treatment options for persons with FMS include:
§ Neurotransmitters that regulate sleep, pain, and immune system function include amitriptyline,
Pain Medications – Although Ultram is sometimes prescribed to help with minimal pain, stronger
§ Muscle Relaxants - and other drug categories may be prescribed as well.
§ Other Medical Treatment – Persons with FMS may benefit from injections of lidocaine
at the site of pain, or
Alternative Treatments - Acupuncture, acupressure, relaxation/biofeedback
Prognosis for Persons with Fibromyalgia Syndrome
FMS is a chronic syndrome with no known cure at this time. Flare-ups can occur at any time and in varying degrees. FMS has been described being as disabling as rheumatoid arthritis due to the profound fatigue and level of pain associated with FMS.
Page Updated 03/18/2006