What is the straight dope on fibromyalgia?

From an even surlier clinician, dealing with another nebulous (and apparently cultural-specific) female “ailment”: http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa3724/is_/ai_n8921396

I have fibromyalgia.

I was about 19 when I came down with “the flu”, but those early onset flu pains never went away. Next thing I knew I was sleeping 16+ hours a day and I needed to rest just walking to the bathroom and back. I was too exhausted to do anything. People were telling me I just needed to get out and exercise and I tried but it just made me more exhausted and my pain levels kept ramping up. Eventually I was diagnosed with glandular fever (mono) and told to rest. The months kept passing and very little changed although eventually I dropped back to sleeping 12 hours a day and being able to move around more. I would still have to rest for days on end after exerting myself. After two years, a rheumatologist diagnosed fibromyalgia.

I developed reactions to chemicals like bleach (the fumes would trigger agonising muscle pain, intense fatigue and a sensation of being freezing cold), starting getting random rashes from shampoos, would ache all over before a storm. I got the “dropsies” and had trouble hanging on to things like pencils, and at times I would struggle to type because my hands wouldn’t co-operate. I suffered from what I later learned others called “brain fog” - I believe this was because of the intense fatigue.

I refused to take pain medication for the condition because I was so young - I didn’t think any good could come of becoming dependent on pain medication in my early twenties, particularly as FMS was something that I could potentially suffer from for the rest of my life. At the time I was diagnosed, doctors were fond of prescribing a low dose of antidepressants to treat FMS because research had shown that sufferers experienced disrupted or non-existent delta sleep waves, and it was believed that a low dose of Zoloft would aid deep sleep. I took Zoloft for under a week, but it made me so ill that after 5 days I was unable to keep anything down including the tablets themselves. After that, I refused any medication.

I know people in the past have sneered at me, and said that fibromyalgia is the trendy disease du jour and that everyone who heard about it in the media convinced themselves that they had it, and that it’s all in their heads. I had never even heard of fibromyalgia until I was diagnosed with it - two years after my symptoms first started - and I had no idea for some time after diagnosis that so many of the other symptoms I was experiencing were connected to it, as I was only told that fibromyalgia was responsible for the pain and fatigue. It wasn’t until I was 22 that I stumbled across an article about FMS online and discovered that the dropsies, brain fog, rashes, food sensitivities and so forth were things that other people experienced too.

What eventually helped me was figuring out my diet. I had suffered from IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) for years before the FMS started but I hadn’t yet worked out much more than avoiding things with tomato in them. Eventually I had to exclude chilli, oranges, lemons and onions and my IBS symptoms improved dramatically. Once I stopped having all the digestive upsets, the fibromyalgia symptoms backed off too and now I have a more normal life. I have even been able to reintroduce small amounts of my IBS triggers into my diet without getting ill. I don’t think it would work for everyone because different sufferers seem to have different triggers, but paying attention to her diet might help you identify things that are making her symptoms worse if she has digestive troubles too.

I find this interesting as my father has AS. In the early stages of my illness they thought perhaps I had arthritis and I was tested for the HLA-B27 marker but I don’t have it so AS was excluded.

Thanks for the detail regarding your condition and thanks to everyone else who responded.

You may find this interesting; per this information from the Spondylitis Association (scroll down), the absence of the HLA-B27 gene marker cannot be used to definitively exclude AS as a diagnosis.

What finally diagnosed me was sacroiliac fusion on X-ray, which I understand is still the only really sure, final way of diagnosing the disease. The HLA testing is certainly helpful, though. AS is very hard to diagnose.

I recall a psychiatrist once telling me, “I’ve never met someone with fibromyalgia who wasn’t, on some level, a very angry woman”.
Something that I think is often overlooked in regards to the “It’s all in your head” thing is that just because a disorder may in fact have a psychiatric origin doesn’t mean that it is not an important or serious issue, or that the suffering it causes isn’t real. We tend to think in this society that a disease has to have a physical manifestation to be real or of genuine concern, but anyone who is educated on things like depression and anxiety (to say nothing of schizophrenia or bipolar disorder) knows that psychiatric illness can indeed be serious, debilitating, and truly cause suffering too.

Thanks for that. I did come across some of that information a few months ago when I was trying to research if there’s a possibility of passing on the HLA-B27 marker to my offspring even though I didn’t inherit it myself. It’s been 13 years since I had that test so I don’t recall if there were other tests that ruled out AS (I know I had an x-ray that showed “early degenerative changes” in my spine, but the doctor I had at the time dismissed that as unimportant and said every x-ray shows early degenerative changes). I suppose it’s a moot point now; I’ve made my peace with my condition and learned to live with it, and it isn’t as severe or debilitating as it was when I was younger.

I wasn’t going to post here for fear of the responses I did get. I rarely tell people that I have Fibro for the same reasons. If they ask why I’m having trouble walking I just say I have a joint condition. I almost never call myself a Fibro “sufferer” and only did so here for ease of explanation. Now I know I will have to be sure to use another adjective for dealing with chronic pain issues if I do see another doctor so I don’t get “red flagged” as a nutter. Thanks for that info.

I have had my symptoms since the early 90’s, before it was “trendy”. I never actually personally experienced the Doubting Physician Syndrome (until now) but I have read a couple Fibro communities and seen other people’s experiences with this problem. I think it scared me off doctors, plus for a long time I didn’t see a doctor because I couldn’t afford it as I didn’t have health care. When I did finally see one he didn’t seem to know that much about it and wasn’t much help to me. My symptoms would come and go so I just dealt with it and tried different NSAIDS and supplements. I’ve actually been doing better in the past few years so I am not in a hurry to see another doctor for it.

I’m somewhat surprised at folks who sound strongly assured of their diagnosis of fibro. Exactly what good is that dx for you? What treatment are you prescribed unique to fibro? Is there any benefit from being diagnosed with fibro than - say - simply chronic pain syndrome?

And what happened to all those folks 10-20 years ago who were diagnosed with Epstein-Barre or chronic fatigue syndrome? Have they all gotten better? Did we lick those diseases and can now turn our might towards ridding the world of the scourge that is fibro?

I’m no doctor, and I don’t know whether fibro is physiological or psychiatric in origin. But the many many people/cases I have encountered of people with fibro (or myofascitis, fibromyositis, somatoform disorder/overlay, CFS, CPS, Epstein-Barre, environmental sensitivity syndrome, etc. ad infinitum) do seem to fall into 2 categories. One category is the “woe is me” group, who are glad for a specific name they consider at least a partial reason why their life is not all skittles and beer. The other group says, “well, this sucks, but I’d better figure out how to do the best I can despite this, whatever you call it.” And I think one’s personality goes a long way in determining which group you gravitate towards.

At $10 per syllable, “some sort of itchy rash” works out to $60, whereas you could have had $80 for “Idiopathic Pruritis.” That twenty bucks you left on the table.


After two years of inconclusive tests, being told it “might be leukemia”, that it was “just mono” and that it should clear up in [del]3 months[/del] [del]6 months[/del] 12 months, tops, that it was “all in your head” and “just get out in the fresh air and exercise” and it would all get better, that it was almost definitely some kind of arthritis, that it “might be MS”… there comes a time when there’s a comfort in being told “There’s a name for what you have. It’s called fibromyalgia, and here’s a list of the things you might experience as a result of this syndrome. It may get worse, it may get better but it won’t kill you”. The ongoing fear comes from having something clearly very wrong with you but not knowing what it is or where it’s going to go. That’s very hard to deal with.

There’s a lot of overlap between the various conditions. I’m of the opinion that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia are the same thing. The symptoms are pretty much identical, but with more of an emphasis on pain in those diagnosed with FMS.

Look, I don’t know whether my symptoms are psychological in origin or if they have an actual physical cause, and it’s something that’s caused me a great deal of self-doubt over the years. I don’t -think- it’s all in my head, but how would I know? It was a great fear of mine that maybe the naysayers were right, and that maybe I’d convinced myself I was sick when I really actually wasn’t. If that’s what happened, it wasn’t through conscious effort. I didn’t want to be sick, I didn’t like being sick and I spent a lot of time in the early years trying to “beat” the syndrome, looking for a solution that would make it go away so I could go back to a normal life.

Psychosomatic or not, the pain and fatigue I experience are very real to me. I suffered from depression in the early days because being in pain every day will do that to you. I missed out on a great deal of life because of it… it’s not how I would have chosen to spend my early-to-mid twenties. In addition to dealing with feeling so utterly wretched, coping with other people’s attitude toward FMS was a challenge all it’s own. When you have the outward appearance of someone young, fit and healthy it’s hard for others to believe that you don’t feel that way on the inside. You get treated like a hypochondriac or a liar a lot. Even people who do try to understand can be annoying in their own way… I got a lot of “My brother’s girlfriend’s mother’s sister had what you’ve got and she was cured by eating nothing but seaweed for a month. Have you tried that?”. I appreciated the sentiment, but got tired of the fad diets and snake oil that were constantly suggested to me by people who had a friend-of-a-friend cured by them.

I think (I hope!) outwardly I don’t project the fibromyalgia personality that you’re all describing here. In real life people usually describe me as “bubbly” (that, or “sweet”), and I’d bet real money that people who only have a casual acquaintance with me would be surprised to learn that I have been treated for depression in the past. While I have no problem talking frankly about my experience with FMS, I still struggle to let people see the effect it has on me and I prefer to hide when I’m in pain or coping with a flare-up. Throughout the last 13 years, despite chronic pain, infertility, bereavement, divorce and unplanned pregnancy, I’ve still always managed to make my doctor laugh. I don’t feel like he doesn’t like me (but thanks for something else to be paranoid about).

Cazzle, I understand not wanting to display the discomforts of fibro to others. I do the same. I try to hide how I’m feeling as it seems oddly shameful to let them see how difficult the syndrome is. In thinking back and listening to family history I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ve had this, whatever it is called, at least since I was less than a year old. It has slowly worsened over the years. Like you, I am apparently not perceived as others describe a “sufferer”. Just the opposite, in fact. People are curious as to why I don’t do something that I obviously have a desire to do. I’m a big healthy-looking person and appear able to do anything.

I am of the opinion that there is an inherited factor in fibro. Though not recognized as such, I’m sure that my mother, her mother and her mother’s father. all had it. That’s as far back as I have any knowledge of my ancestor’s health. It may be that the syndrome lies dormant until there is some sort of trigger that activates it. It may be auto-immune, or, as I’m convinced, a problem with the neurochemicals in the brain. One thing I’m fairly comfortable with is that it is not, in my case anyway, psychological. I’m different from many people but not in ways that the psychologists I’ve seen think that I have trouble coping with. I seem to be fairly mentally healthy. I’ve left doctors that have dismissed my problems as “all in my head” and also those who think that if they could fix my sleep problems it would cure my fibro. I am currently seeing a rheumatologist who prescribed Lyrica for me. It really helped with many of the symptoms but in a fairly short time started causing sleepiness. I now take a small amount to help me sleep and am taking Cymbalta which helps some with the symptoms. Nothing much else has helped, and over the years I’ve tried many things, from changes in diets to therapeutic massage to acupuncture.

Good luck coping with your fibro!

I don’t really know much about fibromyalgia, but my girlfriends’ step-sister supposedly has it. I say supposedly, not as an attack on the disease, but because this woman is an absolute train wreck. She had a shitty childhood that has left her very immature and she clearly never learned any coping skills. As a result, she makes terrible decisions and when the fruits of those decisions become ripe she can’t cope and becomes a miserable, depressed, stressed-out mess. In an effort to make herself feel better, or just to avoid the stress, she then makes more stupid decisions and the cycle repeats, ad nauseum. Its one giant negative feedback loop. Now if my life was nearly as f-ed up as this woman I would probably feel like absolute shit too. All this is the long way of me saying that ike depression, firbromyalgia seems like one of those diseases, syndromes, whatever where to an outsider it’s impossible to determine whether the person’s actions lead to the disease or whether the disease leads to the actions. Maybe fibromyalgia is real, but I think the fact that it often comes coupled with the other thing makes people question it.

I take the position that a person hurts just as bad as they say they do. How would anyone know otherwise? The step-sister sounds like a mess but that has little to do with fibro, but if she’s a mess that also has fibro then she’s truly got problems.

Many people are sure they have a particular disease. Sometimes they do and sometimes they don’t. I don’t think that fibro is caused by mental or emotional problems. I’m not sure what does cause it but I’m very familiar with the symptoms, if not the cause. A person can be well-adjusted or they can be a mess, fibro is not what makes the difference but that doesn’t mean that either type can’t have it. Perhaps the step-sister does have fibro, that’s not what causes her to make bad decisions.

It’s bad enough actually having fibro without others second-guessing the cause. There are some specific things that those with fibro have that I’ve not heard of others having. The “Tender Points” are unquestionable. They feel like bad bruises. The body pain and some of the other problems could have other causes, but the tender points…well, it’s difficult to think that they are all in the head.

How does a psychiatric cause imply that the condition is not real? I have a psychiatric condition, and it’s pretty damn real. I am 100% certain that its cause is physical, since the cause of all thought, belief, emotion, and sensation is physical. There is nothing that does not have a physical cause.

All pain is in your head. Even if you have third-degree burns covering half your body, the pain is in your head. The only difference between pain from a third-degree burn and pain from your imagination is the location of the problem.

The lack of a label is frightening when you don’t feel well and all the doctors can say is that they either don’t believe there is anything wrong with you (and some of them are pretty angry when they say this to you) or they believe your experience but they can’t help you. So to the degree a label allows you to find other patients and compare notes of what does/doesn’t work, it helps you to find ways to help yourself.

It’s been a while since I looked at any medical literature. At least at one point there was academic debate as to whether fibro and chronic fatigue were separate illnesses, or different ends of a continuum representing one illness or related illnesses.

Some folks think that whether you are dxed with one vs. the other has to do more with whether fatigue or pain is your primary complaint, rather than any basis for the two being separate illnesses.

I’ve had a positive tilt table test in 2000 and one of my dxes is neurally mediated hypotension. Some think a positive tilt table test is evidence of chronic fatigue syndrome. And until I was rear ended in 1998, I would have told you I didn’t have a pain problem, and the doctors would have told you I was a nutcase for complaining of fatigue. After the accident, though, I had lots of problems with pain and was ultimately dxed with fibromyalgia.

Who knows? It’s a puzzle all right, and the label is essentially meaningless in terms of knowing what exactly is wrong. But it’s easier to just say I have fibro, rather than trot out a long list of things like migraines, IBS, blah, blah, blah, or to say that I have problems but nobody quite knows why.

I used to care about what was wrong with me when I was sick and kept getting worse in spite of everything I tried to get better. My doctor said he’d never seen someone with fibro try so hard not to slide, but slide I did, until I couldn’t work anymore. Finally, we’d exhausted everything he and a local fibro treatment program could come up with, so I took a risk on something I didn’t think could work–the guaifenesin protocol.

Guaifenesin is an expectorant, and why it helped my “fibro” I can’t say, but it did. Which may well bother some folks here, but I’m not interested in debating. Even if it’s a placebo, bring on the placebo effect, is my response.

I’ve been on guaifenesin for almost nine years now, and have been gradually improving. Six months after going on it, I was able to work full time again, and things have only gotten better, in spite of minor setbacks.

One thing I can say for sure–the better I feel, the less I really care what the label is, or if doctors think I’m nuts, or whatever all the other sterotypes out there are. I just know that I have a significant chunk of my life back, and I’m happy. What more is there, really?

So label me however you wish. It’s simply not an issue to me anymore. I had to switch doctors a couple of years ago when my old doc switched to only seeing hospital patients. When I told my new doc I have fibro, he immediately said, “You know there’s nothing I can do for you.” I had to stifle a laugh at that moment. Not a problem, I told him. I don’t really need his help–I helped myself. :slight_smile:

And yes, I have always been nuts. There is a sign on my cubicle that says “I don’t suffer from insanity; I enjoy every minute of it.” Words to live by, indeed. :wink:

So I wrenched my knee a few years ago. (On the river, incidentally.) It hurt like the dickens. It didn’t feel any better after a few days, so I went to the orthopedist. He poked and prodded my knee for a while and took an x-ray. Then he came back into the room and informed me that I just had a really bad bruise.

“A bruise!?” I said. “I can’t have a bruise! I’ve been bitching and moaning about my knee for nearly a week now, and I’m going to feel like such an idiot having to tell everyone that it’s just a bruise.”

So the doc said, “Okay, then. Tell 'em you have a severe contusion.”

“A contusion! That’s much better!” I said. And I limped out of there happy.

(true story, by the way)

This is so true. It is absolutely terrifying to have a variety of symptoms and no diagnosis.

I concur. I didn’t have fibromyalgia, but I suffered (yes suffered) for years with a variety of problems that no doctor could make heads nor tails of. I was diagnosed with two somewhat controversial conditions (no details here–don’t want to cause a hijack). I was treated for them. And I’m much much better. So I don’t really care if you want to say my conditions weren’t “real.” Hey, maybe they weren’t real, and there were some confounding factors or something. Maybe my illnesses were caused by little green aliens that just coincidentally decided to fly back to the planet Xenon right about the time I started treatment. I really don’t know. I hope medical science figures it all out someday soon. But in the meantime, I’m just glad I feel better.

I read a few responses only to become more infuriated as I progressed, except for Wile E’s response. The people who think this illness in “all in ones head” are severely uninformed. I admit I didn’t even begin to read all the responses here, so there may be others like Wile E who understand this illness.

I was diagnosed with FMS 20 years ago when my children were tiny, and I wanted nothing more than to run and play with them and be a normal Mom. Sadly, I was in so much pain, “normal” was far from possible. What should have been the happiest point in my life, suddenly became the worst.

I had a lot of pain off and on, but one day woke up in so much pain, I couldn’t move or stand. I was determined to get up, tough it out, and go about my day. My husband borrowed a walker from my Mom and I managed to get on my feet, but couldn’t even lift the walker to move it forward, to take a step. I did NOT want this. I wanted to be normal. I did not need attention. With 3 kids and an attentive husband, I had plenty of attention.

My Doc sent me to a Rheumatologist, who diagnosed me as having Fibromyalgia through a trigger point exam and detailed discussion. Like most people 20 years ago, I had never heard of it. He put me on anti-depressants. I didn’t like them because they didn’t kill pain , so I stayed on the anti-inflammatories that my regular Doc had me on before. Although there is no inflammation with FM, NSAID’s do kill some FM pain without making the user feel drugged. The pills are expensive and we couldn’t afford them at that time, but I needed them to function. Again, not something I chose to deal with for life.

Most FM sufferers take anti depressants, not because they are depressed, but to regulate the seratonin in the brain. Supposedly they help the person to achieve deep sleep, which is the root of this problem.

COULD this be all in my head?

On several occasions, I decided I would will this fucking disease away, through the power of positive thinking. I refused to be in pain. I refused to have to take pain killers the rest of my life, just to achieve a level of moderate pain. I decided to will myself well. So I stopped taking them. I focused on how great I felt and how my life would be normal again. It didn’t work. Within a few days, I was totally crippled with pain and unable to move, stand or walk. Then it would take several more days to get the meds back in my system, to where I could function. I tried this another time or two over the years, with no luck, and decided NEVER to try that again. Just take the pills, and live with it.

Fibromyalgia is still not fully understood by Doctors. I learn more on a message board with others who live with the disease - what helps, what works, what doesn’t.

What IS known, (besides what Wile E stated) is that sufferers of FM have a chemical imbalance in the brain and lack the ability to reach stage 4 sleep, the deepest level of sleep. Their sleep patterns are interrupted by alpha waves. The significance is that deep sleep states are necessary for tissue repair and for the release of human growth hormone. If a person with FM goes out and overdoes it, and injures a muscle, it doesn’t repair like normal people. It stays injured.

This lack of deep, healing sleep contributes to a lot of other symptoms…fatigue, confusion, memory problems. And for some reason, stress makes the symptoms worse. For me, high humidity or cold weather also make the pain worse. And for me, the more pain I am in, the worse my memory is. This is one of the worst symptoms besides the pain, for me. I am an intelligent person, but I come off as a bumbling idiot because I can’t remember what was just said a minute ago. Some days, I feel like the dude on Memento, without the tattoos and Polaroids to guide me. Other days, my memory is fine.

Many experts are finding that you can be genetically predisposed to FM. It seems to run in families. That doesn’t mean you will automatically have it though. Something else usually happens to trigger FM. It usually occurs in a person who is highly stressed. In many cases, it is then triggered by a trauma, either physical like an auto accident, or emotional, like the death of a family member. I believe my Mom had FM, but was never officially diagnosed. One of my sons is starting to show symptoms.

Fibromyalgia, Lyme Disease, and Multiple Sclerosis all have such similar symptoms, that they are often misdiagnosed. I have chatted with many people who were diagnosed with FM, only to find out years later they had Lyme all along, and were then able to cure it. I would be seriously pissed to find out now that my kids are grown that I could have been normal all these years! But it happens, a lot. People don’t always see the tick bite.

There also seems to be an overlapping of FM and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Many with FM, also have CFS, but not always. Many with CFS have FM, but not always. They are still recognized as separate syndromes.

One of the complaints of FM sufferers is that it’s an invisible disease. No one can tell you have it. Friends and family members sometimes think that this is all in the persons head, because they don’t LOOK sick. They must just be lazy and craving attention. This is infuriating to the person who suffers with it.

What does it feel like? Imagine you have been brutally beaten with a baseball bat. Your body aches, your skin hurts to touch. Then imagine you have been run over by a semi, then beaten with a bat some more. Then, you have to clean the house, cook dinner, care for the children, wash a few loads of laundry, all the while in extreme pain. You are exhausted, but you can’t sleep. You lay down anyway, but can’t get comfortable. The sheets hurt your skin. Your face feels like it weighs 100 lbs against the pillow. Your joints ache from head to toe. Eventually you do get some sleep, but wake up exhausted. After your pain meds kick in and you can move, you go to the store. You forgot your list and can’t remember anything you came for. You head out to the car and forgot where you parked. You wander around till you find it and collapse in the drivers seat. You get lost on the way home. You pray someone will be there to carry the groceries when you arrive, because you can barely walk after the trip to the store. You are drenched in sweat, throbbing with pain, and now you have all the cleaning and cooking, etc ahead of you. But you LOOK completely normal, and nobody really understands what you are going through.

Do I want this. Hell NO! Is it all in my head? Again, NO. You can’t wish it away, will it away or heal it. You can just mask some of the pain as best you can, and suck it up. It’s here for life.

Thanks for the support. I didn’t really give that much specific information but suggested reading some sites dedicated to the condition. Which is what I did many years ago. I also think it helps a lot to hear other people’s experiences and to realize that “how can it all be in my head when all these other people have been having the same problems as I do before I even knew all the symptoms of this condition?”. I think it would also help someone close to the one with fibro to understand better what they go through that others can’t see.

A couple other posters with Fibro, like Cazzle and Lavender Falcon, did post after me with more information on what they went through. I wasn’t even going to post here until I saw that the Fibro side wasn’t getting much representation.

Hey, in Spanish the flu is la gripe… and the only part of my mother’s “plague” that doctors have been sure of since they started taking her seriously is that it was some sort of reuma.

Mom started having “bone pain” when she was in her teens (c. 1955). She started mentioning it to doctors in her mid-twenties. She got diagnosed with Espondiloartrosis Anquilopoyética (Ankylosing Spondilitis) when she was 31, and told she’d be in a wheelchair by the time she was 40.

Then, when she wasn’t in a wheelchair by age 40, the doctors said it couldn’t be AS. It was some sort of Arthrosis, but not AS. One of the traumatologists she saw during this time (specifically the bleep who gave her cortisone and a mixture of antidepressants and opiates to which she became addicted) even claimed it might not even be arthrosis or any other kind of rheumatic illness.

Then someone noticed that the symptoms are different for men and women. She got re-labeled as AS.

Then the marker was discovered. She got tested. Off goes the label again, but at least this time nobody claimed she might not have a physical problem.

Then someone realized that the absence of the marker doesn’t mean you don’t have AS…

The current diagnosis is “generalized arthrosis.” As SiL-our GP says “who cares what brand it is, what matters is that you have arthrosis, it affects you from the top of your head to the tips of your little toes, and we know which painkillers work.”

Whatever it is, it’s been there for fifty years. But open her history at different points and you get a dozen different diagnosis, changing not so much with her condition as with the current state of the medical art and with the current main physician. If only everything was as easy to diagnose as short-sightedness!

*  fatigue

Hm, mine is due to sleep issues.
* irritable bowel (e.g., diarrhea, constipation, etc.)
hm, mine is cyclic with hormones, or directly related to stress
* sleep disorder (or sleep that is unrefreshing)
never slept a whole night in my life unless drugged
* chronic headaches (tension-type or migraines)
* jaw pain (including TMJ dysfunction)
bruxism. stress related.
* cognitive or memory impairment
i have bouts of aphasia, seems to be stress and pain related. am also dyslexic
* post-exertional malaise and muscle pain
only when I overdid it
* morning stiffness (waking up stiff and achy)
* menstrual cramping
PCOS. I go into labor when I am not hormonally supressed
* numbness and tingling sensations
yup. nerve damage from methyl chloroform exposure and other chemical exposures
* dizziness or lightheadedness
when i am having a migraine, or my blood glucose tanks
* skin and chemical sensitivities
chemical exposures make me sensitive to certain chemicals, though I am allergic to certain fabric softeners but not [giggle] poison ivy.

I think I oculd be diagnosed with it, though my symptoms come from other things … that are not related to fibro.

I have a friend with fibro that was tryign to convince me to go see her doc because she was convinced I had it …