The figures above display the location of the tender points that comprise the 1990 American College of Rheumatology criteria for fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia is similar to rheumatism, which is a chronic condition in which the joints, and soft tissue, experience pain. Like rheumatism, fibromyalgia cause significant pain and fatigue. Fibromyalgia sufferers experience pain and tenderness at multiple, and specific places on the body (see diagram), and pain in response to even very slight pressure.
In addition to pain and fatigue, people who have fibromyalgia may experience
- sleep disturbances
- morning stiffness
- irritable bowel syndrome
- painful menstual periods
- numbness or tingling of the extremities
- restless legs syndrome
- temperature sensitivity
- cognitive and memory problems
What Causes Fibromyalgia?
Fibromyalgia is believed by many to be caused by stressful or traumatic events, such as automobile accidents. Other connect it to repetitive injuries, or think it's related to lupus, or other auto-immune diseases. The actual cause is not known, and there is no cure.
For a fibromyalgia diagnosis, a person must have 11 or more tender points. One of these predesignated sites is considered a true tender point only if the person feels pain upon the application of 4 kilograms of pressure to the site. People who have fibromyalgia certainly may feel pain at other sites, too, but those 18 standard possible sites on the body are the criteria used for classification.
While there is no cure for fibromyalgia, chiropractic may be able to relieve some of the symptoms, in some cases. To find out if you can be helped, contact our office today to make an appointment for a free examination and analysis, or click here to request the appointment online.