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Fibromyalgia Syndrome

Fibromyalgia has been a relatively controversial condition due to the lack of scientific evidence as to the root cause.  It is a syndrome rather than a disease and Fibromyalgia has become an umbrella term combining multiple symptoms which have been grouped together and which portray the typical presentation of Fibromyalgia.  Fibromyalgia is thought result from the improper processing of pain signals, which thereby amplifies pain, diffusely distorting it to cause widespread pain, fatigue, and increased tenderness.  Many beliefs as to the cause of Fibromyalgia relate back to a period of increased psychological stress, trauma, surgery, infection or injury, after which symptoms slowly and progressively develop.  

In addition to the diffuse pain and fatigue, the syndrome also entails sleep problems, mood disorders, memory and cognitive function fogginess.  There is more localized pain and tightness to the shoulders, neck and upper back as well as myofascial pain to the thighs and TMJ, and are noted as being tender points.   Stress, anxiety, weather, and a woman's menstrual cycle have all been noted to be a precipitating and aggravating factor, and physical activity has been noted to be a beneficial and even therapeutic modality.  Females are nine times more likely than men to develop FMS.  There is ongoing research and analysis into the condition of Fibromyalgia, but nevertheless it is a diagnosable disease by the American College of Rheumatology.