Fibromyalgia is one of the most common diseases to affect the muscles. Also known as fibrositis, it is characterized by uneasiness in the entire body joints. Fibromyalgia has also been described as a kind of pain in muscles and joints of the human body. A different kind of rheumatic disease, it does not lead to any internal or external deformity. Mostly, fibromyalgia affects women aged between 35 and 55. However, it also occurs among men, children and elderly people. It can occur independently or be associated with another disease, such as systemic lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. Restless sleep, fatigue, anxiety, depression, and disturbances in bowel function are some major indicators of fibromyalgia. In case you want to explore the symptoms of the disease in detail, just go through the lines that follow.
Warning Signs Of Fibromyalgia
Affected people feel pain in response to the normal body movements. Researchers have found elevated levels of a nerve chemical signal, called substance P, and nerve growth factor in the spinal fluid of fibromyalgia patients. Levels of the brain chemical serotonin have also been found relatively low in patients with fibromyalgia. Studies on pain in fibromyalgia have suggested that the central nervous system i.e. brain, may be, somehow, supersensitive. Scientific researches on the disease note that there seems to be a diffuse disturbance of pain perception in patients with fibromyalgia. In earlier stages of the disease, people go through psychological distress, trauma, and infection in bowel. Other major symptoms are:
- Pain is, usually, focused on the neck, buttocks, shoulders, arms, the upper back, and the chest. Tender areas of the body, sometimes, bring on widespread pain and muscle spasm, when touched. The tender points or pressure points of fibromyalgia are commonly found around the elbows, shoulders, knees, hips, back of the head, and the sides of the breastbone. Pain in the body of fibromyalgia patients can be aggravated by noise, weather change, and emotional stress.
- Fatigue is experienced by 90% of the people. It may be related to abnormal sleep patterns, commonly observed in the patients. Those suffering from fibromyalgia lack deep sleep, called "non-rapid-eye-movement" (non-REM) sleep. Waking up fatigued and not feeling fresh is common among them. Some patients also complain of muscle aches or a sensation of muscle fatigue after waking up in the morning.
- Mental or emotional disturbances occur in over half of the people suffering from fibromyalgia. The symptoms include forgetfulness, mood changes, irritability, depression, and anxiety.
- Some people suffering from fibromyalgia may also experience difficulty in concentrating on anything. Chronic anxiety is also a possible symptom that may accompany poor concentration.
- Fluctuations in body weight, heat or cold intolerance and a subjective feeling of sickness have also been identified as indicators of fibromyalgia.
- Other symptoms associated with fibromyalgia are insomnia, headaches, nervousness, numbness, dizziness, abdominal pain, bloating, constipation, diarrhea and intestinal disturbances.
- Since a firm diagnosis of fibromyalgia is difficult, and no confirmatory laboratory tests are available, the patients are often misdiagnosed as having depression, as their primary underlying problem.