What is fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is a name given to a group of symptoms marked by generalised pain and muscle stiffness. These symptoms can be felt in all different areas of the body. Extreme fatigue (tiredness) and sleep problems are also common in fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia does not cause inflammation or damage to the painful areas, but seems to be due to an over active pain system. Fibromyalgia is different to polymyalgia rheumatica, a type of arthritis in which symptoms are felt more in the muscles.
What are the symptoms?
What causes it?
It is not known what causes fibromyalgia. It may be more common in people who have:
How is fibromyalgia diagnosed?
What will happen to me?
The good news is that fibromyalgia does not cause any lasting damage to the muscles or joints. It is important to remember that, with help and better understanding, the symptoms can be effectively managed. The symptoms of fibromyalgia may range from very mild to severe. They may last for many years or they may come and go at different times. With the right advice most people find they learn to manage the pain and tiredness over time. Health professional input may be required at times if the pain is more severe and affecting your normal activities.
Is there a cure for fibromyalgia?
What can I do?
Learn about fibromyalgia and play an active role in your treatment. Not all information you read or hear about is trustworthy so always talk to your doctor or healthcare team about treatments you are thinking about trying. Self management courses aim to help you develop skills to be actively involved in your healthcare.