Fibromyalgia was once thought to be a mental disorder. It was first described by doctors in the the early 1800s. They wrote about a health condition called “muscular rheumatism”. The symptoms were stiffness, aches, pains, tiredness, and difficulty sleeping. In early 1820s a doctor in Scotland first described the tender points of Fibromyalgia. Eight years later the disease was named “fibrosistitis” as swelling was thought to be the cause of pain in the body. But, in 1976 researchers renamed the disease to Fibromyalgia because it was found that swelling was not, in fact, the cause of the widespread pain experienced by sufferers.
Fibromyalgia Syndrome is a vast growing disease effecting over 12 million Americans. Most sufferers are women ages ranging from 25-60 years old. Unfortunately, women are 10 times more likely to have the disease than men. The American College of Rheumatology has grouped Fibromyalgia as a rheumatic condition more common of the arthritis-related illnesses. Some of the “characteristics of Fibromyalgia include but are not limited to widespread muscle and joint pain” (WebMD.com). Other symptoms that accompany fibromyalgia are fatigue, especially when rising in the morning, tender points on the body when pressed; some may also experience swelling, inability to achieve deep sleep, and depression. The above mentioned are just general symptoms of the disease, but when a patient with fibromyalgia experiences these symptoms over a prolonged period of time they may begin suffering other ailments such as; hypersensitivity to cold and/or heat, inability to concentrate, incontinence, irritable bowel syndrome, numbness or tingling in the fingers and feet, painful menstrual cramps, and stiffness.
As of now there are no actual laboratory tests that can diagnose fibromyalgia, making a diagnosis of fibromyalgia very difficult to come to and often takes substantial amount of...