The Pathophysiology Of Fibromyalgia

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There are many diseases that affect the musculoskeletal system, one of them being fibromyalgia. This condition is hard to diagnose, but can be detrimental to a person’s everyday life. Fibromyalgia is a condition which makes pain escalate throughout the body, and it is most often accompanied by depression, fatigue, and cognitive issues. Women are much more likely to experience this condition, but men also are known to suffer from fibromyalgia as well. There have been cases reported from throughout the world, and no race shows an increase in susceptibility. Fibromyalgia is also hard to treat, but can be managed with medications, stress management, sleep therapy, and a nutritious diet. Fibromyalgia is a disease that can affect anyone.…show more content…
It is understood to be a disorder of pain processing and sensitivity. As described before serotonin, catecholamines, and dopamine all have a role in the pathophysiology of this disease. Abnormal functions of the stress response system of the body and the central nervous system are both to blame for fibromyalgia. The serotonin levels within the body have a large role, as this neurotransmitter helps to control pain. Fibromyalgia is often present when an individual has low levels of this specific neurotransmitter in the central nervous system. The body tries to cope with pain to the best of its abilities, however the pain threshold is lowered considerably and pain seems to be intensified. This condition is also strongly associated with Raynaud syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, mood and anxiety disorders, and regional pain syndromes. (Huether, 2012). With a combination of preexisting factors such as imbalances in hormones and neurotransmitters, and also any trauma or pain inducing syndromes fibromyalgia is a risk for any…show more content…
Fibromyalgia is very hard to diagnose because it may be masked by another disease process. The pain felt by the patient can be overlapped from another affected bodily system, so it can be difficult to pinpoint this particular condition. Positron emission tomography (PET) scans and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) can be used to determine if fibromyalgia is present. When a painful stimulus is present, those suffering from fibromyalgia show activity in different areas of the brain than in healthy individuals (Huether, 2012). There are also eighteen points on the body known to be linked to this condition. In order to diagnose a patient with fibromyalgia using these bodily areas, tenderness in eleven of these eighteen points must be present. Areas that contain these points are near the occiput, trapezius, supraspinatus, gluteal, greater trochanter, low cervical, second rib, lateral epicondyle, and the knees. The multiple points should be felt both above and below the waist and on either side of the spine (Huether, 2012). Normal lab testing should also be done in order to rule out any other pain exacerbating

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