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What is Fibromyalgia?

​Fibromyalgia is a chronic condition of widespread pain and profound fatigue. The pain tends to be felt as diffused aching or burning, often

described as head to toe. It may be worse at some times than at others. It may also change location, usually becoming more severe in parts of the body that are used most.

The fatigue ranges from feeling tired, to the exhaustion of a flu-like illness. It may come and go and people can suddenly feel drained of all energy – as if someone just “pulled the plug”.

Fibromyalgia is a common illness. In fact, it is more common than rheumatoid arthritis and can even be 

more painful. Prevalence of Fibromyalgia: A Survey in Five European Countries (see www.fmauk.org/prevalence for details) put the prevalence of FM at between 2.9% and 4.7%. People with mild to moderate cases of fibromyalgia are usually able to live a normal life, given the appropriate treatment. If symptoms are severe, however, people may not be able to hold down a paying job or enjoy much of a social life.

 

The name fibromyalgia is made up from the word “fibro” which represents fibrous tissues such as tendons and ligaments; “my” indicating muscles; and “algia” meaning pain.

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