Every year more and more people are diagnosed with Fibromyalgia
Since 2013, the number of people who are diagnosed with this chronic,
debilitating condition has risin from 1 in 25 to 1 in 20 people worldwide!
Fibromyalgia, also called Fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS), is a long-term condition that causes pain all over the body.
As well as widespread pain, people with fibromyalgia may also have:
increased sensitivity to pain
fatigue (extreme tiredness)
problems with mental processes (known as "fibro-fog") –
such as problems with memory and concentration headaches
irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) – a digestive condition that causes stomach pain and bloating
If you think you have fibromyalgia, visit your GP. Treatment is available to ease some of its symptoms, although they're unlikely to disappear completely.
What causes fibromyalgia?
The exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, but it's thought to be related to abnormal levels of certain chemicals in the brain and changes in the way the central nervous system (brain, spinal cord and nerves) processes pain messages carried around the body.
It's also suggested that some people are more likely to develop fibromyalgia because of genes inherited from their parents.
In many cases, the condition appears to be triggered by a physically or emotionally stressful event, such as:
an injury or infection
having an operation
the breakdown of a relationship
the death of a loved one
Anyone can develop fibromyalgia, although it affects around
7 times as many women as men. I believe it is because of male pride.
The condition typically develops between the ages of 30 and 50, but can occur in people of any age, including children and the elderly.
It's not clear exactly how many people are affected by fibromyalgia, although research has suggested it could be a relatively common condition.
Some estimates suggest nearly 1 in 20 people may be affected by fibromyalgia to some degree.
One of the main reasons it's not clear how many people are affected is because fibromyalgia can be a difficult condition to diagnose.
There's no specific test for the condition, and the symptoms can be similar to a number of other conditions.
How fibromyalgia is treated
Although there's currently no cure for fibromyalgia, there are treatments to help relieve some of the symptoms and make the condition easier to live with.
Treatment tends to be a combination of:
medication – such as antidepressants and painkillers
talking therapies – such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and counselling
lifestyle changes – such as exercise programmes and relaxation techniques
Many people with fibromyalgia find that support groups provide an important network where they can talk to others living with the condition.
Fibromyalgia Awareness offers those suffering a safehaven to chat to someone who understands how they are feeling, as most of our volunteers are fibro sufferers to.
The charity also has a network of local support groups you may find helpful and a online community, where you can find out about news & events.
We will be adding more information and updates to this site as and when we can, We have had to start from scratch and ask that you all bare with us until we manage to get everything back onto the website.