Fibromyalgia is a rheumatic disorder - a condition with unknown causes and no known cure. The primary symptoms are chronic flu-like pain in the muscles, joints, tendons and/or ligaments described as burning, shooting, stabbing and throbbing. Often accompanied by disturbed sleep patterns, insomnia and fatigue.
Other symptoms include anxiety, depression, chronic headache, dizziness, impaired co-ordination, irritable bowel syndrome, swollen joints, swollen lymph nodes, irritable bladder, palpitations, memory impairment, numbness or a tingling sensation, restless legs syndrome, skin sensitivities, dry eyes and mouth, difficulty with swallowing, frequent changes in eyeglass prescription, stress related disorders, premenstrual syndrome and painful periods.
The most distinctive feature of a diagnosis involves the existence of certain tender points. There are nine pairs of specific spots where the muscles are abnormally tender to the touch:
1. Around the lower vertebra of the neck.
2. At the insertion of the second rib.
3. Around the upper part of the thigh bone.
4. In the middle of the knee joint.
5. In muscles connected to the base of the skull.
6. In muscles of the neck and upper back.
7. In muscles of the mid-back.
8. On the side of the elbow.
9. In the upper and outer muscles of the buttocks.
This disorder is much more common in females than males and more often than not, begins in young adulthood.
Possible Causes Of Fibromyalgia:
Some evidence points to a problem with the immune system due to certain immunologic abnormalities that are common among people with fibromyalgia.
A disturbance in brain chemistry may also be involved. Many who develop this disorder have a history of clinical depression.
Other possible causes that have been proposed include anemia, infection with Epstein-Barr virus, Candida albicans, chronic mercury poisoning (from amalgam dental fillings), parasites, hypothyroidism and hypoglycemia. In addition, because this disorder tends to run in families, researchers also suspect that there is a hereditary component.
Most people who have this disorder have chronically low levels of the hormone serotonin. This deficiency causes sleep problems as well as more sensitivity to pain.
A magnesium deficiency is also associated with fibromyalgia. Stress makes the pain worse, and low-impact exercise is recommended to help ease symptoms.
Because mal-absorption problems are common in those with this disorder, higher than normal doses of all supplemental nutrients are needed.
Vitamins A and E are both free radical scavengers that protect the body's cells (antioxidants) and enhance immune function. Use emulsion forms for easier assimilation. Take 25,000 IU of vitamin A daily for one month then slowly decrease to 10,000 IU daily. Take 800 IU of vitamin E daily for one month then slowly decrease to 400 IU daily.
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