A number of other clues do exist for fibromyalgia diagnosis such as:
- family history
We have already talked about the fibromyalgia triggers but it is worth reviewing them briefly. The problem is that any stress can trigger fibromyalgia. Obviously, the most stressful situations are the ones remembered.
But, any given stress will not always have the same effect.
This is due to:
- the genetic profile can be strong or weak meaning that one profile may be easy to trigger whilst another one may be more difficult to express itself.
- the magnesium deficiency is variable. A small deficiency may be harmless whilst an important one plays in favour of developing fibromyalgia.
- the status of the individual at the time of stress is variable:
. previous stress
. rested or tired
. hormonal balance dysfunction
. other associated disease etc...
Trauma is the most commonly reported stress and it is also better remembered.
Whiplash is so classical that whiplash fibromyalgia has been quoted! It's easily remembered. It involves postural muscles that are easy to trigger and is a violent unexpected stress. The greatest pity here is that the fibromyalgia long term treatment is also the best treatment for whiplash and would avoid entering chronicity!
Infections are common and we have seen that fibromyalgia following infection is usually called chronic fatigue syndrome.
Any other stress can trigger such as a divorce, moving house, bereavement etc.
Obviously the simplest stress such as a common viral infection, a trivial trauma or a common child problem in a household can trigger but are usually not remembered. Fibromyalgia without knowing the trigger does not preclude the diagnosis and does not change the treatment, which is mostly based on the long term treatment.
Co-morbidities (such as asthma, high blood pressure, migraines etc..) are common in fibromyalgia. Some of them can even be the trigger of fibromyalgia such as an autoimmune disease or other rheumatological conditions. They are important to know so they are not overlooked.
In reverse, a co-morbidity on its own is not the explanation of the signs and symptoms of fibromyalgia which would end up in fibromyalgia not being treated.
Finally, the family history is important.
In fact family clusters are so common that they define the reality of fibromyalgia being a genetic disease. But it is a genetic disease with a low expression: not everyone with a genetic profile will develop fibromyalgia symptoms.
Not only it is important to note the presence of fibromyalgia in the family members but also we must note the commonly associated disease such as IBS.
Whilst fibromyalgia diagnosis can be made without the above clues those clues add to the probability of fibromyalgia diagnosis.
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