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Fibromyalgia Sucks Ass

public - created 11/13/03
Welcome to the Fibromyalgia Sucks Ass tribe!

For men and women with Fibromyalgia AND related conditions and symptoms. If you do not have an official diagnosis, you are still welcome here. Welcome also, family, friends and allies, to chat, get information, resources and support.

Let this be a place where empathy, caring, strength, and support create a safe habour in cyberspace. We are afterall, our own society of the slightly misundestood, the curiously strong, and the ever searching for ways to manage and heal from Fibromyalgia.

Feel free to rant and vent here as well.


WHAT IS FIBROMYALGIA SYNDROME?

FMS (fibromyalgia syndrome) is a widespread musculoskeletal pain and fatigue disorder for which the cause is still unknown. Fibromyalgia means pain in the muscles, ligaments, and tendons – the soft fibrous tissues in the body.

Most patients with FMS say that they ache all over. Their muscles may feel like they have been pulled or overworked. Sometimes the muscles twitch and at other times they burn. More women than men are afflicted with FMS, and it shows up in people of all ages.

To help your family and friends relate to your condition, have them think back to the last time they had a bad flu. Every muscle in their body shouted out in pain. In addition, they felt devoid of energy as though someone had unplugged their power supply. While the severity of symptoms fluctuate from person to person, FMS may resemble a post-viral state. This similarity is the reason experts in the field of FMS and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) believe that these two syndromes may be one and the same. Gulf War syndrome also overlaps with FMS/CFS.

SYMPTOMS AND ASSOCIATED SYNDROMES

Pain - The pain of FMS has no boundaries. People describe the pain as deep muscular aching, throbbing, shooting, and stabbing. Intense burning may also be present. Quite often, the pain and stiffness are worse in the morning and you may hurt more in muscle groups that are used repetitively.

Fatigue - This symptom can be mild in some patients and yet incapacitating in others. The fatigue has been described as "brain fatigue" in which patients feel totally drained of energy. Many patients depict this situation by saying that they feel as though their arms and legs are tied to concrete blocks, and they have difficulty concentrating, e.g., brain fog.

Sleep disorder - Most FMS patients have an associated sleep disorder called the alpha-EEG anomaly. This condition was uncovered in a sleep lab with the aid of a machine which recorded the brain waves of patients during sleep. Researchers found that most FMS patients could fall asleep without much trouble, but their deep level (or stage 4) sleep was constantly interrupted by bursts of awake-like brain activity. Patients appeared to spend the night with one foot in sleep and the other one out of it.

Irritable Bowel Syndrome - Constipation, diarrhea, frequent abdominal pain, abdominal gas, and nausea represent symptoms frequently found in roughly 40 to 70% of FMS patients.

Chronic headaches - Recurrent migraine or tension-type headaches are seen in about 50% of FMS patients and can pose a major problem in coping for this patient group.

Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction Syndrome - This syndrome, sometimes referred to as TMJ or TMD, causes tremendous jaw-related face and head pain in one quarter of FMS patients. However, a 1997 published report indicated that close to 75% of FMS patients have a varying degree of jaw discomfort. Typically, the problems are related to the muscles and ligaments surrounding the jaw joint and not necessarily the joint itself.

Other common symptoms - Premenstrual syndrome and painful periods, chest pain, morning stiffness, cognitive or memory impairment, numbness and tingling sensations, muscle twitching, irritable bladder, the feeling of swollen extremities, skin sensitivities, dry eyes and mouth, dizziness, and impaired coordination can occur. Patients are often sensitive to odors, loud noises, bright lights, and sometimes even the medications that they are prescribed.

Aggravating factors - Changes in weather, cold or drafty environments, infections, allergies, hormonal fluctuations (premenstrual and menopausal states), stress, depression, anxiety and over-exertion may all contribute to symptom flare-ups. (From Fibromyalgia Network)

More resources:

Fibromyalgia Network
www.fmnetnews.com/pages/basics.html

The National Fibromyalgia Association
www.fmaware.org/

National Fibromyalgia Research Association
www.nfra.net/

About.com What is Fibromyalgia?
chronicfatigue.about.com/od/articles/a
/fibromyalgia.htm

ImmuneSupport.com
www.immunesupport.com/1/fibromyalgia.htm
RULES OF TRIBE:
Rule 1: Be considerate in your relations with others - be nice, if you don't agree that is fine but there is never cause for swearing at someone or for name-calling EVER. It will not be tolerated here and violators will be removed.

Rule 2: There is no advertising here. This is not the place to promote cures, only ideas. If you have something that is working for you great - say so and move on... do not dedicate whole threads to "Dr. Moko's Miracle rub". Any posts that are thought to promote or advertise a product will be removed.

Rule 3: Make new thread subject lines clear. Clever thread titles can be fun and eyecatching - but if they are misleading you are just annoying folks. Do not post a Question, with the answer inside - that smacks of marketing. If you wish to share someone elses work, a new article - say so: New York Times discusses Lyrica updates for example would be fine... as opposed to Does Lyrica Work? See what I mean.... If the thread is about sex, say it's about sex, if it's about a new drug, say it's a new drug.
http://tribes.tribe.net/fmsa
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