Fibromyalgia and memory study

Fibromyalgia and memory study
Most women with fibromyalgia suffer from memory and concentration problems: A Spanish study published in the Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology states that most women with fibromyalgia say they have memory problems and can’t concentrate, and the majority also suffer from anxiety and depression.

Researchers performed neuropsychological assessments, which included measures of attention and executive functions. Patients were assessed by completing questionnaires of several topics including cognitive complaints, anxiety, depression, pain intensity, physical functioning, quality of sleep, and quality of life.

They reported that nearly 83 percent of the women had cognitive complaints, 23 percent of them mild and the other 60 percent moderate to severe. Depressive symptoms were generally described as low working memory ability and low everyday physical functioning and were more common in women who reported cognitive complaints. Collectively, 82 percent of women had symptoms of depression and 70 percent had “significant levels of anxiety,” while 68.6 percent of the participants had both depression and anxiety.

“The results of this study confirm that subjective cognitive complaints are very frequent in fibromyalgia patients, but that they are not exclusively related to depressive symptoms; functional and objective cognitive dysfunction could also be involved in their manifestation,” researchers wrote. They also urged doctors to “not minimize” cognitive complaints by their patients.



Fibromyalgia and Sjögren's Syndrome

Fibromyalgia and Sjögren's Syndrome

Well this article from News Medical Life Sciences was definitely of interest to me as I have both Fibromyalgia and Sjögren's Syndrome (SS). I was actually diagnosed with SS first and then when some symptoms did not fit with it the rheumatologist said I also had Fibro. 

Studies have explored the possibility of fibromyalgia and Sjögren's syndrome coexisting in a patient. Researchers have found that fibromyalgia is more common in patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome who complain of fatigue as their main symptom.
Studies have shown that nearly 68% of patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome have fatigue as a major symptom. 
Fatigue is a common symptom in 12% patients who have both fibromyalgia and primary Sjögren's syndrome as diagnosed by set criteria.
In addition patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome also have severe sleep problems that are seen in a large majority of these patients.
Fatigue, as well as dryness of the mucous membranes within the mouth as seen in primary Sjögren's syndrome is commonly seen in patients with fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia may present alone or in combination with other diseases like primary Sjögren's syndrome. (This correlates with what I have just found out people classified as having primary fibromyalgia (PFM) have a defined set of pain, fatigue, cognitive, and psychological symptoms but do not have an inflammatory disorder. People classified as having secondary fibromyalgia (SFM) do have another inflammatory disease such as sjogren's syndrome or rheumatoid arthritis. Read more about this)
In patients with primary Sjögren's syndrome fibromyalgia has been found in 44 to 55% patients according to some studies.
I would love to hear from you in the comments below if you have Fibromyalgia and Sjögren's Syndrome too. 


Primary and Secondary Fibromyalgia Are The Same

Well this is news to me as I didn't even know there was Primary and Secondary Fibromyalgia!

Primary and Secondary Fibromyalgia Are The Same

Apparently people classified as having primary fibromyalgia (PFM) have a defined set of pain, fatigue, cognitive, and psychological symptoms but do not have an inflammatory disorder. People classified as having secondary fibromyalgia (SFM) do have another inflammatory disease such as sjogren's syndrome or  rheumatoid arthritis.

Researchers led by Frederick Wolfe, MD, of the National Data Bank for Rheumatic Diseases and the University of Kansas in Wichita, studied patients with primary and secondary diagnoses to see if they “had the same level of outcomes, symptoms, and characteristics” at different points across the polysymptomatic distress (PSD) scale. PSD is a measure to assess the severity in fibromyalgia. I also have never heard of this even though I have Fibromyalgia. As far as I am aware no doctor has ever used this scale on me, and I have seen many specialists. The researchers state that the "PSD can identify criteria-positive FM with > 90% accuracy."

The PSD is calculated by combining two measurements used in fibromyalgia: the widespread pain index (WPI), which counts the number of painful regions in the body, and the somatic symptom scale (SSS), which measures fatigue, sleep, emotional and cognitive problems, and the extent of symptom reporting. 

In their research they studied 1525 patients with a clinical diagnosis of FM and 12,037 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). 

Their Conclusion was that PFM and SFM are equivalent regarding the symptom burden.

But what this new research also shows, Dr Wolfe said, is that while up to now “you couldn’t easily study people with fibromyalgia [in other disorders], it doesn’t matter if you have RA or another disorder in addition to fibromyalgia. You get the full spectrum or severity regardless. The underlying disease wouldn’t affect your identification of the fibromyalgia symptoms.”

This research Primary and Secondary Fibromyalgia Are The Same: The Universality of Polysymptomatic Distress was published online in the Journal of Rheumatology in July 2018.

RESOURCES: Rheumatology News and The Journal of Rheumatology

MY TAKE ON THIS: As I had never heard of these terms PFM and SFM I am wondering if they are terms used a lot in the US and not in Australia where I live. As I have 3 autoimmune diseases as well as Fibromyalgia I was interested to find out that I had SFM but then this report really says they should be treated as the same condition!

Acupuncture for Chronic Pain: Update

Acupuncture for Chronic Pain
PracticeUpdate  July 2018
The authors of this meta-analysis examined 39 trials including 20,827 participants with nonspecific musculoskeletal pain, osteoarthritis, chronic headaches, or shoulder pain in an attempt to end the controversy regarding appropriateness of acupuncture for chronic pain.
Despite wide use in clinical practice, acupuncture remains a controversial treatment for chronic pain. 
Our objective was to update an individual patient data meta-analysis to determine the effect size of acupuncture for 4 chronic pain conditions. 
We searched MEDLINE and the Cochrane Central Registry of Controlled Trials randomized trials published up until December 31, 2015. We included randomized trials of acupuncture needling versus either sham acupuncture or no acupuncture control for nonspecific musculoskeletal pain, osteoarthritis, chronic headache, or shoulder pain. 
The main outcome measures were pain and function. 
We also found clear evidence that the effects of acupuncture persist over time with only a small decrease, approximately 15%, in treatment effect at 1 year. 
We conclude that acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic pain, with treatment effects persisting over time. Although factors in addition to the specific effects of needling at correct acupuncture point locations are important contributors to the treatment effect, decreases in pain after acupuncture cannot be explained solely in terms of placebo effects. 


Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic musculoskeletal, headache, and osteoarthritis pain. Treatment effects of acupuncture persist over time and cannot be explained solely in terms of placebo effects. Referral for a course of acupuncture treatment is a reasonable option for a patient with chronic pain.


These findings show that acupuncture has a clinically relevant effect on chronic pain.
This study agrees with previous articles I have written about Acupuncture for Fibromyalgia on Fibro Files.  Many previous scientific studies support the use of acupuncture in reducing symptoms, as do my personal experiences. 


Hydrotherapy Benefits Fibromyalgia Patients Only If They Stick With It, Study Reveals

Hydrotherapy Benefits Fibromyalgia Patients
Fibrotimes 12 Jul 2018
Hydrotherapy — physical exercise performed in water — can effectively improve clinical symptoms of fibromyalgia only if performed continuously.
That finding was drawn from data collected in a randomized, controlled trial, reported recently in the study “Effects of aquatic training and detraining on women with fibromyalgia: controlled randomized clinical trial.” The study was published in the European Journal of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine.

Several non-pharmacological strategies have been proposed to manage fibromyalgia symptoms. Among the non-pharmacological possibilities is aquatic physical training, or hydrotherapy, which consists of an aerobic physical training program that is conducted in a heated pool. This alternative treatment option reduced pain and improved the quality of life of fibromyalgia patients.


To have a better understanding of the benefits of hydrotherapy, Brazilian researchers conducted a controlled trial. The study enrolled a total of 54 women with clinically diagnosed fibromyalgia who were randomly assigned to undergo hydrotherapy or just perform their normal daily life activities.
The training program consisted of 32 sessions of 45 minutes, twice a week, for a total of 16 weeks. Each session included a 10-minute warm-up phase, 30 minutes of intense exercise, and five minutes of relaxation exercises.


After 16 weeks of hydrotherapy training the participants showed a significant improvement in their aerobic capacity compared to baseline levels, and compared to those in the control group. Also, after the training program the patients said they experienced less fatigue and anxiety, and improved well-being, functional capacity, and vitality.
The patients showed a 7% reduction in pain scores, 192% increase in SF-36 physical function, and a reduction of 19% in FIQ score after completion of the 16 weeks of therapy.
However, these positive effects were lost during the following 16 weeks, in which the participants stopped the training program. 


The team believes that aquatic physical training “should be continuously performed in order to improve clinical symptomatology and increase the aerobic functional capacity” of those living with fibromyalgia.

If you would like to stay up to date with Fibromyalgia News articles like this and coping tips please sign up to my newsletter.


My Wish (Self Love for beginners)

Today's post is by Fibro advocate Sharna Stewart


          If I could wish you anything besides good health it would be the ability to love your true authentic self. I wish this for my beautiful niece and all the other readers out there, disabled, abled, chronically ill and everyone else who falls in the majority or minorities of humanity.

          My advice being, not to wait the 34 years and counting, it has taken me to even mutter the phrase ‘self love’. I understand this is no easy wish I’m bestowing on you, but I have to believe that your generation will commence life with a full and healthy dose of self esteem that’s resilient to the bumps and hurdles that happen along the way. A good cup of worthiness, affection, trust and love for yourself, no matter the roads in which you choose to follow. An acceptance that allows you to forgive the multitude of 3am anxiety attacks that see you in tears on the bedroom floor or the number of times you have beaten yourself up for being sick, unreliable, disappointing, boring, a burden and most importantly an overall ‘drain’ on the multidisciplinary healthcare system. 

          In conclusion, try to learn to see yourself through your loved ones eyes and open yours to the incredible real ‘you’, the kind, loving, generous, bubbly, wholesome girl you are and will grow to be. Don’t give in to the deceitful chatter that creeps in when things don’t go as planned, know your self worth and always love you, unconditionally.

About Sharna Stewart

Sharna is an advocate for Fibromyalgia Awareness. She has had fibromyalgia and CFS for 5 1/2 years.

You can connect with her through her twitter account.
She would like to connect with anyone suffering from fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome (ME), Gastroparesis, Tachycardia and Irritable Bowel Syndrome. 

She wants to share her knowledge of mental health related issues and the latest treatments for pain management, including but not limited to ketamine, CBT, infrared saunas, float tanks and GET.  

Fibromyalgia News June 23 2018

Fibromyalgia News June 23 2018
What I have for you here is the latest Fibromyalgia news that I was finding/watching/reading this week: 
information about Fibromyalgia including 
Fibromyalgia research, 
Fibromyalgia medical findings 
Fibromyalgia Newspaper coverage and 
discussions on Fibromyalgia. 

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition of pain, fatigue and mental fog. 

This week I have discovered a few articles about Fibromyalgia in the newspapers. Interestingly they are all from the United Kingdome.

Tory MP in England, Andrea Jenkyns 'cannot remember a day without pain' in 15 years. Ms Jenkins also has fibromyalgia, a long term-condition that causes pain all over the body and has meant she "hasn't had a day free of pain in 15 years" Read article at The Yorkshire Post. (just click skip survey to read it)

Shock figures show north-east (Scotland)victim of postcode lottery of chronic pain treatment waiting times. The mother of a teenager who suffers from fibromyalgia, ME and chronic fatigue syndrome has said the lengthy wait makes personalised care difficult. Read article at Aberdeen Journals Ltd.

Super slimming husband and wife in national slimming competition. She has Fibromyalgia, uses a wheelchair and has lost 3 stone 8.5 lbs. Read article at Rasen Mail

My battle with Fibromyalgia: Some days I am crippled with pain but I won't let it hold me back. 'Sometimes the pain can be so bad I can't move, other times I’m just so tired that I can't wake up' Read full article at Plymouth Herald.


Using distraction to reduce pain in Fibromyagia patients

Does distraction reduce pain in Fibromyagia patients

You can watch the video or read the transcript below.

TRANSCRIPT: A new study shows that distraction can be an effective tool in reducing pain in patients with fibromyalgia just the same as it is in healthy people.
We all know that when we are in pain it has an impact on our ability to function well. People with Fibromyalgia usually live in constant pain as just one of their symptoms.

The study - Task interference and distraction efficacy in patients with fibromyalgia: an experimental investigation - was conducted at the Institute for Health and Behaviour, INSIDE, University of Luxembourg and printed in Ovid in June 2018.

All people who participated in the study experienced the pain stimulus as less intense when directing attention away from the pain than when focusing on the pain. So distracting themselves from the pain actually lessened the pain.

This is what I have always thought and why I spend so much time researching on the computer, reading, watching television and drawing. When I do these things the pain recedes and it is not in the forefront of my awareness.

The actual task performance of patients with Fibromyalgia (FM) in the study was slower than the task performance of the healthy control group. (as I would expect)

In contrast to what researchers thought, patients with FM and healthy volunteers did not differ in the effect or efficacy of the distraction. 

In conclusion, the study reported that they support contemporary theories claiming that attention modulates the experience of pain and vice versa. However, no evidence was found for an altered attentional processing of pain in patients with FM. 

So using distraction in whatever form it takes is a valid tool for coping with FM pain. Do you agree that distraction helps in coping with pain?

If you are looking for ideas to help you cope with pain and other symptoms of Fibromyalgia please sign up below. 


Fibromyalgia News

Fibromyalgia News

Here you will find the latest Fibromyalgia news:
information about Fibromyalgia including
Fibromyalgia research,
Fibromyalgia medical findings
Fibromyalgia Newspaper coverage and
discussions on Fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition of pain, fatigue and mental fog.

Neurobiological similarities between RA and fibromyalgia

Date:        9 June, 2018 
Source:     Nature Reviews Rheumatology
Summary: Pain management can be a difficult problem for patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), some of whom can experience pain similar to that reported by patients with fibromyalgia. Now, advanced imaging techniques are revealing neurobiological alterations in patients with RA that mirror those seen in fibromyalgia, hinting at new treatment possibilities.

Customized resistance exercise a factor for success with fibromyalgia

Date:         June 7, 2018

Source:      University of Gothenburg

Summary: Fibromyalgia and resistance exercise have often been considered an impossible combination. But with proper support and individually adjusted exercises, female patients achieved considerable health improvements, according to new research.

The role of mirtazapine in patients with fibromyalgia: a systematic review

Date:          June, 2, 2018
Source:      SpringerLink
Summary:  Mirtazapine is commonly used to treat major depressive disorder. Due to its effects on multiple neurotransmitters, it has been investigated for possible benefits in patients with fibromyalgia. The objective of this systematic review is to assess the efficacy and safety of mirtazapine in the treatment of patients with fibromyalgia.

Mirtazapine for Fibromyalgia: An Effective Treatment Option? An Article explaining above review.

Date:       June 5, 2018
Source:   MPR
Summary: The antidepressant mirtazapine appears to be a safe and effective treatment option for patients with fibromyalgia, according to a systematic review published in Rheumatology International

Fibromyalgia: Symptoms of painful condition revealed - are you at risk?

Date:         May 29, 2018

Source:      Express Newspapers UK

Summary: FIBROMYALGIA symptoms include pain, headaches, muscle stiffness and an extreme sensitivity to the touch. How many people have fibromyalgia in the UK, and are you at risk? Treatment options and risk factors revealed and a video.

FCI: Advocating For A World Without Fibromyalgia

Date:           May 29, 2018
Source:       ProHealth
Summary:  Yvonne Keeny is founder and executive director of the Fibromyalgia Coalition International, a nonprofit organization speaks aout about advocacy. 

VIDEO: RNA blood test may aid in reducing diagnostic error for fibromyalgia


Exercises for Fibromyalgia: The Complete Exercise Guide for Managing and Lessening Fibromyalgia Symptoms

Exercises for Fibromyalgia: The Complete Exercise Guide for Managing Fibromyalgia
Studies consistently show that exercise helps restore the body’s neurochemical balance, boosts energy, restores sleep, and overall improves the emotional state. 
As medical practitioners, we see both great results with exercise and, at times, aversion to it due to a negative prior experience and exacerbation of symptoms. 
It is this double-edged sword that patients and we as physicians face in using therapeutic exercise in the treatment of fibromyalgia. 
On the one hand, exercise is another form of exertion for someone who already has decreased endurance, fatigue, and disturbed sleep. 
For someone with fibromyalgia, to take on an exercise routine means overcoming the above barriers, only to face the next question: How do I exercise so that I get the benefits without getting the unwanted increase in fatigue and pain? What are the appropriate exercises and where do I start? Zinovy Meyler, D.O., Co-Director, Interventional Spine Program, Princeton Spine and Joint Center 
In Exercise for Fibromyalgia, rehabilitative specialist William Smith has created a book that details the theory of exercise with the clinical experience and empirical evidence, showing the science behind appropriate therapeutic exercise.  This book is a much needed road map in the maze that can be fibromyalgia.

The maze of Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a debilitating condition, yet medical opinions are divided as to its cause and how it should be treated. Is it a neurological or a physical ailment? Should you treat the muscles or the mind? The correct answer is to treat both. Improving overall fitness while reducing anxiety and stress is the key to reducing your fibromyalgia symptoms and improving your daily functioning.

This book Exercises for Fibromyalgia is designed to improve your fitness and energy levels without strain or stiffness. With a focus on exercises designed to relieve pain and improve sleep for fibromyalgia sufferers, you will find yourself feeling better each day, as your strength increases and your soreness decreases.

Combined with effective techniques proven to relieve stress and improve your sleep habits, Exercises for Fibromyalgia makes sure your mind and body both benefit from a healthy lifestyle.

Exercises for Fibromyalgia also includes:

- An overview of living with fibromyalgia and the benefits of exercise
- Clear, informative pictures of safe, effective exercises
- Detailed instructions on how to perform each exercise
- A complete exercise approach to reduce stress and improve fitness
- A training log to track progress

Having fibromyalgia doesn’t mean having to give up exercise as this book can show you how safely.

If you are interested you can get more information here Exercises for Fibromyalgia: The Complete Exercise Guide for Managing and Lessening Fibromyalgia Symptoms

I am an Amazon affiliate which means that I will receive a small payment, at no extra cost to you, for any purchases made through the above link. Thank you.


Tai Chi for fibromyalgia

Tai Chi for fibromyalgia

Researchers have found that there are greater improvements in Fibromyalgia symptoms in people doing tai chi than in people doing aerobic exercise.

Tai chi, is an ancient Chinese exercise that came out of martial arts that has since become part of traditional Chinese medicine. Tai chi combines deep breathing and relaxation with flowing movements.

The study was led by Dr Chenchen Wang from Tufts University's Center for Complementary and Integrative Medicine in Boston to compare the effects of tai chi with aerobic exercise. 226 adults who had fibromyalgia participated in the study. None of them had engaged in tai chi or other types of alternative therapy in the 6 months before starting the study.

When the study began, the researchers questioned the patients about their physical and mental symptoms, including the intensity of their pain, ability to move, fatigue, depression, anxiety and overall well-being.

The patients were assigned to either aerobic exercise therapy or tai chi. The exercise group completed two supervised aerobic exercise sessions each week for a total of 24 weeks. Those who engaged in tai chi followed one of four treatment plans: one or two sessions per week for a total of either 12 or 24 weeks.

The patients continued taking their medication and made regular visits to their doctor.

This was a single-blind randomised controlled trial and the research was published in BMJ on 21 March 2018.

Researchers found there were greater benefits in people who did tai chi, compared with the aerobic exercise, when done twice a week for 24 weeks.

All patients experienced some relief of their symptoms, but the improvements were much greater among those in the tai chi groups at the end of 24 weeks.The researchers suggest that tai chi should be considered as a therapeutic option for the management of fibromyalgia.

“We think our results suggest that physicians should think about what type of exercise is best for their patients with fibromyalgia,” says Wang. “We found that tai chi was more enjoyable, there was a social connection and they could practice it at home by themselves with their family and friends.”

The great thing about tai chi is that it can be done by most people in most settings.

Tai Chi for fibromyalgia in outdoor setting in China

I have done tai chi in the past, before I had fibromyalgia, and found it very calming. After reading this research I will be looking for a beginner's class in tai chi. How about you have you tried tai chi? I would love to hear.

Medical Information on Fibromyalgia

Medical Information on Fibromyalgia Jan and feb 2018
Here is the latest research and medical papers for Fibromyalgia in 2018. I hope you find something helpful here. Click on the title to be taken to the article.

Fibromyalgia and Risk of Dementia-A Nationwide, Population-Based, Cohort Study.
Tzeng NS, Chung CH, Liu FC, Chiu YH, Chang HA, Yeh CB, Huang SY, Lu RB, Yeh HW, Kao YC, Chiang WS, Tsao CH, Wu YF, Chou YC, Lin FH, Chien WC.
Am J Med Sci. 2018 Feb;355(2):153-161. doi: 10.1016/j.amjms.2017.09.002. Epub 2017 Sep 15.

Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Evaluation of Auricular Percutaneous Electrical Neural Field Stimulation for Fibromyalgia: Protocol for a Feasibility Study.
Gebre M, Woodbury A, Napadow V, Krishnamurthy V, Krishnamurthy LC, Sniecinski R, Crosson B.
JMIR Res Protoc. 2018 Feb 6;7(2):e39. doi: 10.2196/resprot.8692.

Fibromyalgia Among Patients With Chronic Migraine and Chronic Tension-Type Headache: A Multicenter Prospective Cross-Sectional Study: A Comment.
Leiva-Calderón A, Mayorga-Moreno RJ.
Headache. 2018 Feb;58(2):309-310. doi: 10.1111/head.13241. No abstract available.

Fibromyalgia Among Patients With Chronic Migraine and Chronic Tension-Type Headache: A Multicenter Prospective Cross-Sectional Study - A Response.
Cho SJ, Sohn JH, Bae JS, Chu MK.
Headache. 2018 Feb;58(2):311-312. doi: 10.1111/head.13246. No abstract available.

Serum cortisol levels and neuropsychological impairments in patients diagnosed with Fibromyalgia.
Barceló-Martinez E, Gelves-Ospina M, Navarro Lechuga E, Allegri RF, Orozco-Acosta E, Benítez-Agudelo JC, León-Jacobus A, Román NF.
Actas Esp Psiquiatr. 2018 Jan;46(1):1-11. Epub 2018 Jan 1.

Complex Regional Pain Syndrome After Distal Radius Fracture Is Uncommon and Is Often Associated With Fibromyalgia.
Crijns TJ, van der Gronde BATD, Ring D, Leung N.
Clin Orthop Relat Res. 2018 Feb 5. doi: 10.1007/s11999.0000000000000070.

Reduced frontal activity during a verbal fluency test in fibromyalgia: A near-infrared spectroscopy study.
Chou PH, Tang KT, Chen YH, Sun CW, Huang CM, Chen DY.
J Clin Neurosci. 2018 Feb 6. pii: S0967-5868(17)31654-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jocn.2018.01.030.

Chronic pain patients can be classified into four groups: Clustering-based discriminant analysis of psychometric data from 4665 patients referred to a multidisciplinary pain centre (a SQRP study).
Bäckryd E, Persson EB, Larsson AI, Fischer MR, Gerdle B.
PLoS One. 2018 Feb 8;13(2):e0192623. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0192623. eCollection 2018.

Ginger rhizome enhances the anti-inflammatory and anti-nociceptive effects of paracetamol in an experimental mouse model of fibromyalgia.
Montserrat-de la Paz S, Garcia-Gimenez MD, Quilez AM, De la Puerta R, Fernandez-Arche A.
Inflammopharmacology. 2018 Feb 8 doi: 10.1007/s10787-018-0450-8

A systematic review of precipitating physical and psychological traumatic events in the development of fibromyalgia.
Yavne Y, Amital D, Watad A, Tiosano S, Amital H.
Semin Arthritis Rheum. 2018 Jan 10. pii: S0049-0172(17)30481-X. doi: 10.1016/j.semarthrit.2017.12.011.

Benefits and Harms of Cranial Electrical Stimulation for Chronic Painful Conditions, Depression, Anxiety, and Insomnia: A Systematic Review.
Shekelle PG, Cook IA, Miake-Lye IM, Booth MS, Beroes JM, Mak S.
Ann Intern Med. 2018 Feb 13. doi: 10.7326/M17-1970.

Neurobiological features of fibromyalgia are also present among rheumatoid arthritis patients.
Basu N, Kaplan CM, Ichesco E, Larkin T, Harris RE, Murray A, Waiter G, Clauw DJ.
Arthritis Rheumatol. 2018 Feb 13. doi: 10.1002/art.40451.

High fat diet sensitizes fibromyalgia-like pain behaviors in mice via tumor necrosis factor alpha.
Tian D, Tian M, Zhang L, Zhao P, Cui Y, Li J.
PLoS One. 2018 Feb 14;13(2):e0190861. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0190861. eCollection 2018.

Medical Information on Fibromyalgia


Health check for Fibromyalgia patients

Health check for Fibromyalgia

Living with the pain and fatigue of Fibromyalgia is a daily struggle.

The WebMD health check - Fibromyalgia Assessment - can help by:
  • assessing your symptoms 
  • offering you treatment options 
  • helping those who are not yet diagnosed. 
So it can give you tips to help you cope with fibromyalgia and the good thing is that it is free and a simple online questionnaire.

You are rated on your health, well being and symptoms.

You receive information on medications available and ways to change your habits to decrease your pain. While the answers are quite a generalised response I feel that it is good especially if you are just diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, or unsure if you have Fibromyalgia or just want to check that there is not something else you could be doing to help yourself feel a bit better.

Start here.

WebMD wants you to know that their tool does not provide medical advice. It is intended for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read.


Health check for Fibromyalgia patients


Simple stress management tips

There is inevitable and unavoidable stress associated with the holiday season and add this to a life living with a chronic illness, which usually means chronic pain, and the stress is compounded.
I am glad you are here and reading this and I hope you find something helpful and worthwhile to help you or a loved one cope with the added stress at this time of the year.

Remember to take care of yourself. 
The words self care make me cringe but we just must look after ourselves to even feel vaguely normal at the best of times so this is even more important now.

Whenever you remember take 3 deep breaths. Breathe in the good and let go the bad...
I do this whenever I get in my car to drive anywhere and at other times when I feel overwhelmed and it has become a helpful habit very quickly. It sounds stupid but just 3 deep breaths and I can feel the tension subside.

self care ideas

Choose to see the good stuff.
Try and stay on positive topics and with positive people. When I am feeling overwhelmed gossip and bad news and drama and negative talking really drags me down further. 

Laughing and humor and comedy shows make me feel good especially if enjoyed with others. In some strange way laughter reduces pain and allows us to tolerate discomfort.

Also listen to your own ‘self-talk' because often we can be in a habit of saying negative things in our heads that just add to our stress. This is unhelpful so try and realize what you are doing and change the tape you are playing  - instead of saying ‘I can't cope' say 'it's time to take a break' or 'calm down' or 'others can help do this too'.  

Nature and being outdoors really can be a breath of fresh air. Sometimes I am so low I don't want to go out and see people but I have found that going for a walk at dusk or at night is also a great way to rejuvenate. There is no one around where I live, they are all in their houses, and no bright sunlight (which does affect my eye health) and I feel better after just a 5 minute walk. It is also calming to look at the sky, the clouds, the stars and the moon and feel the breeze or even the gentle rain. 

Find your own joy.
Let go of the shoulds and the old traditions and do what makes you feel good.  Create new traditions that are simple and easy to maintain within your life and your capabilities. As an example, at Christmas do we really need to send christmas cards, when we can send a group email? Do we really have to have all the relatives over for lunch when we could make a new tradition of meeting for Christmas Carols at the local Christmas event or church? 

You might also find the following helpful: