Sunday, November 7, 2010

Getting a Fibromyalgia Diagnosis

Fibromyalgia is probably one of the hardest things to get diagnosed.  Many doctors are in disbelief that it is a valid disorder.  My own doctor, himself doesn’t like to use the “label” Fibromyalgia. He told me this on my many visits.  He felt like it was a term that was too broad and a catch all for anything that could not be answered.  Part of this is due to the overlapping of symptoms with other diseases. lists the most common symptoms of Fibromyalgia as:
·         Chronic muscle pain
·         Muscle spasms or leg cramps
·         Sleep problems
·         Severe fatigue
·         Anxiety
·         Depression
·         Morning stiffness
·         Headaches
·         Difficulty concentrating
·         Skin sensitivities
·         Irritability
·         Intestinal problems
These symptoms are related to so many other diseases and disorders, from Arthritis to Lupus and many things in between.  I personally have been told it is my anxiety, my depression.  Let’s look at the blood work up.  Nothing found other than a bit of inflammation, probably caused by the Fibromyalgia.  Take a ton of x-rays, MRIs, and more blood. Finally I went to a back doctor and because he and my primary physician couldn’t find anything, they finally agreed with me.  They diagnosed me with Fibromyalgia even though neither of them completely agreed with the diagnoses. 
It can be a very long and frustrating process to get diagnosed with Fibromyalgia.  There are no tests at this time to take to prove you have it. There is a trigger point assessment some rely on where you have to have 11 of the 18 points.   Diagnosing Fibromyalgia is a process of eliminating any other possible cause.  For some it can take years of being told nothing is wrong before you finally get that diagnoses that proves to you that it is not all in your head and that what you feel is for real.


  1. Shannon what are the trigger points. I have every one of these symthoms other than the depression . They keep saying it is my age. One reason I just retired. Just had so many days I had to force myself to go to work.

  2. Karan,
    Trigger points are points on your body that if touched lightly causes pain. They require you to have 11 of the 18 points to be considered to have Fibro. Though not everyone with Fibro have them all. I know when the cats walk on me if they step on certain spots it sends me through the roof.