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Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition characterized by widespread pain in your muscles, ligaments and tendons, as well as fatigue and multiple trigger points - places on your body where slight pressure causes pain. More common in women than in men, fibromyalgia has also been known by other names such as fibrositis, chronic muscle spasm syndrome, psychogenic rheumatism and tension myalgias.

 

Diagnosing Fibromyalgia
Dr. Williams begins to diagnose fibromyalgia by asking you the following questions:

  • Do your muscles feel "tight", especially in the morning?
  • Do you always need to stretch with constant aches and pains in your neck, low back and hips?
  • Do you feel old and stiff with morning fatigue, sleeping problems and many tender spots?
  • Do you have constant pain between the shoulder blades?
  • Are you experiencing neck, shoulder, hip or low back pain?
  • Do your arms or legs go numb, tingle or hurt?

If you answer yes to these questions, Dr. Williams may diagnose fibromyalgia and recommend a course of treatment.

A Medical Mystery
To standard medicine, fibromyalgia, with its accompanying muscle spasms and trigger points, is a mystery. No specific abnormality has consistently been found in the muscles or connective tissues of people with fibromyalgia and nothing is known to be awry in their body chemistry. Medical doctors have tried a number or drugs including novocaine, procaine, xylocaine, cooling sprays, muscle relaxants and cortisone injections - all with mixed results. More often than not, these are only temporary solutions and the still-suffering patient is referred to a physical therapist to try heat, massage and other modalities, again with limited success.

Holistic Approach
Because strong psychological components, including anxiety, compulsiveness and depression, are often present in patients with fibromyalgia, a holistic approach has become very popular. People suffering from fibromyalgia who are also sedentary, will find that aerobic exercise can improve the sleep disturbances, fatigue and pain. Muscle relaxation can serve as a good compliment to this approach - patients sometimes benefit from muscle stretching, massage, hot showers and hot/cold compresses, as well as the use of liniments, such as oil of wintergreen.

The Chiropractic Approach
Dr. Williams begins treating fibromyalgia by correcting any existing Vertebral Subluxations and seeking to correct the mechanical - muscle, bone and joint - factors that play a major part in fibromyalgia. A healthy spinal column will ensure that the nerves going to your muscles are free of nerve interference - a necessary foundation for healthy muscle function. For many fibromyalgia patients, Dr. Williams's chiropractic care has been the key to alleviating their symptoms.