I am a doctor of fibromyalgia. That’s what I want people to understand

Fibromyalgia, an often misunderstood illness, confuses and frustrates both patients and physicians. I know, because I have seen both sides – both as a doctor and a woman, with the disease itself.

This common chronic illness characterized by widespread muscle pain, fatigue and it lacks brains. An estimated 5 million Americans suffer from illness and nearly 90 percent of those diagnosed are women.

However, there is still much confusion about the disease and how it is treated. Here are five truths about fibromyalgia most doctors are still unfamiliar with:

1. Fibromyalgia is real and can be treated, but requires a holistic approach.

Research on fibromyalgia was then compared with other diseases characterized by controversy and a century of debate over whether it was a “real” disease.


That changed in 2002, when a revolutionary study showed abnormalities in the way the brain handles pain in fibromyalgia. These brain image studies have objective data to show that fibromyalgia is “real” and led to a decade of intense research conducted by the FDA as a squeezing pain signals to three approved drugs. 
These medications, however, do not treat the often crippling symptoms of fatigue and confusion, called fibronzebla. To do this, doctors and patients should be well informed about the various treatment options, especially holistic approaches such as diet modification to reduce inflammation or the addition of nutritional supplements to boost cellular energy production.

2. This is not an absolute puzzle.

I often hear that the myth repeated that “we do not know what causes fibromyalgia.” Recent research by doctors shows that most doctors still do not know how to help their patients with fibromyalgia, despite the existence of treatments very effective. Fibromyalgia is often referred to in medical journals as “confused,” “mysterious,” and “confusing.”

TV commercials say that fibromyalgia is a condition of pain overactive nerves not telling the whole story. In fact, pain problems are just the tip of the iceberg. A much bigger factor is a reaction to stress (or risk) goes out and the ongoing “red alert”, causing a chain reaction that causes fatigue, confusion and muscle aches.

The only way to sustainably improve these symptoms systematically treats the negative effects on the body of the overactive response to chronic stress. An answer to chronic stress-activated destruction to prevent deep sleep and severe muscles in pain and pressure sensitivity lead; It affects digestion and energy production; and the removal of hormones. It also follows that the pain-sensitive nerves, the volume of their signals.

3. Fibromyalgia is primarily a sleep disorder.

Unfortunately, many medical experts know even sleep, they do not have the sleep problems that may accompany fibromyalgia. However, fibromyalgia is a sleep disorder, a condition that causes chronic sleep deprivation and deep in many ways. Studies have repeatedly shown that patients suffering from lack of sleep are often interrupted by the “awake” brainwaves. This hunger deep sleep contributes to fatigue, muscle aches and foggy thinking, the disease is characteristic.
The treatment of sleep is the key to treating fibromyalgia, and here I see more ways to reduce pain, fatigue and mental confusion. The dream is still to improve, before other treatments do not work, it is important to treat this problem with your doctor to treat hidden sleep problems such as obstructive sleep apnea, then add drugs and supplements to restore normal sleep.

4. Most doctors do not know much fibromyalgia, and it’s not their fault.

Fibromyalgia is a rare disease claimed by a particular, but overlaps clumsily in the field of rheumatology, neurology, sleep medicine and pain. Most of the attention associated with family physicians does not overwhelm the time to get new ideas for treatment in the sea of ​​medical publications. The main medical journals fibromyalgia negligence. In fact, a study on fibromyalgia since 1987 has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine, the most common medical journal in the world.

Since the busy first aid providers do not have the time to bring their attention to the search for new treatments for fibromyalgia research in a different way, namely through their patients. So in my new book, The FibroManual, I understand a health guide for medical advice is supported by studies on patients to draw the attention of your doctor.

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