This chronic condition, which can be challenging to diagnose, results in pain throughout the body and a feeling of exhaustion that can last for months. Fibromyalgia affects more women than men and often develops during early and middle adulthood.
Doctors aren't sure why fibromyalgia develops. It may be caused by a change in how the brain perceives pain signals, resulting in increased sensitivity. It can also develop after a traumatic injury, disease, or major surgery.
Fibromyalgia may result in a range of symptoms, but typically pain is felt when slight pressure is applied to the muscles and joints. Tender areas often include the back of the head, neck, upper back, chest, elbows, hips, and knees. Fibromyalgia may also result in unrefreshing sleep, headaches, irritable bowels, and increased sensitivity to lights, sound, smells, or touch.
Treatment plans are tailored to individual patients and symptoms. Treatments can include medications, relaxation techniques, and lifestyle changes.