In 2012 new Canadian guidelines for the diagnosis, management and treatment of Fibromyalgia were published. The purpose was to assist health professionals help patients manage their diverse collection of signs and symptoms, which have been diagnosed as Fibromyalgia Syndrome.
Fibromyalgia was first recognized as a syndrome in 1999. Signs and symptoms now recognized are:
Fybromyalgia can affect all ages and genders, but is most prevalent in females 30-50 years old. Over one million Canadians are affected. There is no known cause.
- widespread body pain
- sleep disturbance
- mood disturbance
- variable bodily symptoms
Diagnosis can only be made when symptoms have been present for at least 3 months. There is no specific lab test and diagnosis can only be made when other conditions have been ruled out and there has been careful clinical and physical evaluation. No specialist is required for diagnosis and treatment. There is no cure, but there is also no damage to tissues, despite the pain.
Treatment is directed toward assisting patients manage symptoms to improve quality of life. This may include:
Symptoms may wax and wane over time. Treatments may be altered and tailored to the individual.
- alternative therapies
Many patients continue to work, and all persons with Fibromyalgia are encouraged to pursue as normal a life as possible, balancing their activity to maintain or improve lifestyle. Palliser Primary Care Network can assist patients in their journey with Fibromyalgia. Contact your physician or other health professional at your clinic.
Judy Howe, RN.