Pressure point tenderness is found in the majority of fibromyalgia sufferers and significant pain in at least 11 of 18 pressure points will encourage a physician to consider a fibromyalgia diagnosis. Pressure points are found in the shoulders, hips, back of the elbows and sides of the breastbone. When touched with moderate pressure, they can bring on muscle spasms and widespread pain.
You should not assume that if you have tenderness and are always tired, that you have fibromyalgia. Only a doctor can diagnose you with this very real, very painful condition. Fibromyalgia sufferers may feel as if they are in a fog. An inability to concentrate plagues many fibromyalgia patients and this “fibrofog” can be debilitating. Fibrofog can last all day, or a few hours, and in some patients it can be an almost constant issue to deal with.
Fibromyalgia patients may also suffer from depression. The relationship between the depression and pain is not fully understood, however it is very clear that chronic pain leads to depression and vice versa. For some fibromyalgia sufferers, anti-depressant medication has had some effect on their level of pain, although it does not appear to erase the syndrome entirely.
What is known about fibromyalgia is that sufferers are in pain. Although the symptoms of fibromyalgia are subjective in nature and often overlap the symptoms of other conditions, more is being learned about fibromyalgia on a daily basis.
Before you accept a diagnosis of fibromyalgia, you may want to consider being tested for chronic food allergies as well. Food allergy testing can be completed through blood-work. You may be surprised to find that you may have a significant and chronic food allergy that is causing overall pain and tiredness. You may find that with a change in diet, your symptoms may dramatically improve.
Unfortunately, fibromyalgia is difficult to treat with western medicine because the root causes of fibromyalgia are not known. Acupuncture can be used to ease the chronic pain of fibromyalgia sufferers quite effectively without any dangerous side effects.
Does Acupuncture Hurt?
Acupuncture is virtually painless and can reduce your pain within just one session. The needles are very thin, about the width of a cat’s whisker. When a needle is inserted, most of the time you will not feel it at all.
A study published in December 2007, by the Pain Management Center located in London, England, concluded that acupuncture “offered symptomatic improvement to some patients with fibromyalgia who failed to respond to traditional treatments”.
Acupuncture can be a great way to reduce your levels of pain, stress and fatigue, giving you the tools you need to fight fibromyalgia and the debilitating effects the disorder can have on your lifestyle.
If you have any questions send me an e-mail or call me at (425) 502-5142.
I’ll be happy to answer your questions and discuss your concerns.
Crystal Rose Tank
Board Certified and Licensed Seattle Acupuncturist