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An Introduction To Fibromyalgia

St Louis Spine and Joint Pain Specialists


Anyone that has fibromyalgia knows firsthand all the trials and tribulations that go along with this medical condition. It is not easy to diagnose because the symptoms such as difficulty with sleep, constantly feeling tired, insensitivity to temperature, and of course generalized pain, are nonspecific and mimic many disease processes. It is also not easy to live with because it makes daily tasks uncomfortable and in turn unpleasant.

So what is fibromyalgia and why is it so uncomfortable? Fibromyalgia is a condition that occurs when a person’s nerves become more sensitive to pain. Specifically, it is believed to be the nerves in the spinal cord and brain that become more sensitive to pain. Since all messages from your body have to go through the spinal cord and brain it presents a real issue when this pathway turns something seemingly pleasant like a massage into something painful. Even a change in room temperature can turn into a feeling of agony. To best characterize what fibromyalgia is and why it is so unpleasant it can be summarized as the following: Fibromyalgia is when pain signals from nerves found within the spinal cord and brain fire more than normal causing the person to feel increased pain.

Even the normal distention produced by gas inside the intestines can be extremely uncomfortable to a person with fibromyalgia; as the pressure in the intestines builds up it sends a signal to the spinal cord where it is first misinterpreted in the spinal cord and then again in the brain. The same applies to the normal pressure placed on the inner lining of the bladder when a person has to urinate causing someone with fibromyalgia to feel a tingling or other odd sensation as their bladder fills.

The list of symptoms goes on but as you can see the culprit is always the same; a misinterpretation of signals by the brain and spinal cord. But if you are a person with fibromyalgia don’t let this get you down because while it may be unpleasant it can be improved, so if you are suffering with this condition hopefully you now have a better understanding of why you feel the way you do.

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