Understanding Fibromyalgia: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments

Managing Fibromyalgia

Unlike other common diseases, fibromyalgia is a collection of symptoms that suggests the presence of a specific syndrome. Women are 10 times more likely to experience its effects than men, and most fibromyalgia patients are between the ages of 25 and 60. The condition is shrouded in mystery, and physicians and researchers are working hard to find more specific answers related to its cause.

Symptoms

People who are experiencing certain symptoms concurrently and consistently may be suffering from fibromyalgia. Beverly Hills spine surgeons commonly see the following chronic symptoms:
• Generalized pain and aches throughout the body
• Fatigue that limits daily productivity
• Uncontrolled, unexplained anxiety
• Tender or burning points on the body
• A lowered pain threshold
• Lingering depression

Causes

Researchers have yet to reach a consensus on what triggers fibromyalgia, but extensive studies point to certain conditions that have a strong connection with the syndrome.

One theory suggests that decreased levels of a neurotransmitter in the brain, serotonin, may be causing decreased pain tolerance. Genetic factors along with brain or spinal cord trauma may cause diminished serotonin levels.

Stress and insomnia may also be linked to the syndrome. Disordered sleep and the continual bombardment of stress hormones on the nervous system may result in increased sensitivity to painful stimuli.

Treatments

Treating fibromyalgia may start on a trial and error basis. Physicians and patients may need to try different medications, therapies, and non-surgical spine treatments until a good regimen is found. Remedies will also depend on which of a patient’s symptoms are more prominent in his or her particular case. The most commonly prescribed treatments include:
• Sleep medications
• Pain pills
• Serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRI)
• Physical therapy
• Anticonvulsant drugs
• Medications that specifically target nerve pain

If all conservative methods have failed, decompression spine surgery may be another option. To find out if you are a candidate or to learn more about the surgery itself, reach out to The Spine Institute Center for Spinal Restoration. A qualified and experienced physician can help determine the best course of action to treat your specific needs. Request a consultation today by calling (310) 858-7757.

Managing Fibromyalgia