Each year, medical professionals diagnose ten million people in the United States with fibromyalgia, making it one of the most common chronic pain conditions. It can disrupt personal and professional lives and make daily tasks seem incredibly difficult. If you are not familiar with fibromyalgia, let’s start with that.
Fibromyalgia is a long-term, chronic pain that causes aches and sharp pains in your muscles, joints, and bones. It is still not entirely understood as a disease; some people develop it quickly as an onset condition after a physical injury, while others develop symptoms slowly over time. It can affect people at any age, and it, unfortunately, has no cure. However, after receiving a diagnosis, there are a variety of treatments that can relieve pain. Read on to find out about symptoms, treatment, and other relevant information about fibromyalgia.
The name fibromyalgia is pretty new.
Fibromyalgia may have been around for centuries, but humans have only been calling it that for a few decades! That’s right; medical professionals called fibromyalgia something else before then. In 1976, the term was fibro from âfibrous tissue,’ and myo from the Greek word for muscle and algia from the Greek word for pain. Previously, it was named fibrositis due to the incorrect belief that the disease was caused by inflammation (hence the -itis) (via Mental Floss).
Regardless of the name, we know something in the body causes fibromyalgia; it is not a mental condition, an overactive imagination, or a love of drama. Although, many people misunderstand and believe this to be the case. The pain is real – people living with fibromyalgia aren’t faking it. In fact, a small study in 2013 found that people living with fibromyalgia have extra sensory nerve fibers around certain blood vessels, indicating that these extra nerve endings could perceive pain instead of only regulating blood flow (via Mental Floss).