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    Created in 2008, Phoenix Rising is the largest and oldest forum dedicated to furthering the understanding of and finding treatments for complex chronic illnesses such as chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS), fibromyalgia (FM), long COVID, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS), and allied diseases.

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Fibromyalgia is not a mental disorder.

barbc56

Senior Member
Messages
3,657
Since a lot of us also have Fibromyalgia, which may be a subset of CFS/ME, the folloing URL has a lot of good information.There are quite a few tabs that have even more information. I was surprised that the authos wrote that FM is not a mental health condition.:) :thumbsup:

I sent quotes from the site to a few members in my family who think I only have depression. They're coming around the longer I am ill. I guess that in a way is good and bad news.

This site makes me more hopeful that there will be day (when,when when?) the same thing can be said about me/cfs.

I have seen over 5,000 fibromyalgia patients over the past 20 years; most want to be reassured that their symptoms are the product of a "real disease" rather than figments of a fertile imagination--commonly ascribed to the psychological diagnosis such as somatization, hypochondriasis, or depression. The good news is that contemporary research is hot on the track of unraveling the changes that occur within the nervous system of fibromyalgia patients. The basic message is that fibromyalgia cannot be considered a primarily psychological disorder, but as in many chronic conditions, psychological factors may play a role in who becomes disabled and may even up-regulate the central nervous system changes that are the root cause of the problem.

About 20 percent of FM patients have a co-existing depression or anxiety state that needs to be appropriately treated with therapeutic doses of anti-depressants or anti-anxiety drugs often in conjunction with the help of a clinical psychologist or psychiatrist. Basically, patients who have a concomitant psychiatric problem have a double burden to bear. They will find it easier to cope with their FM if the psychiatric condition is appropriately treated. It is important to understand that fibromyalgia itself is not a psychogenic pain problem, and that treatment of any underlying psychological problems does not cure FM.
(my bold)

http://www.fmcpaware.org/aboutfibromyalgia

Barb C.:>)

To the mods. I was not sure where to post this information. Move as needed. Thanks!!
 

Misfit Toy

Senior Member
Messages
4,178
Location
USA
I tell most people that I have Fibro over CFS anymore. People don't take CFS seriously and ME is something I can't pronounce. It's too complicated to say. It sounds better, I guess. Fibro is and has gotten more attention. People see commercials for Lyrica so that's what I say. CFS is still the main deal.
 

Desdinova

Senior Member
Messages
276
Location
USA
Unfortunately you'd be surprised at the number of people who can read something as straight forward as that article and still come away not only thinking FM is psychological. But even insisting that the whoever wrote the article said that it was. You would be amazed at how many people can hear the term central nervous system and think mental health / psychological. Because in their minds they equate Nerves = Emotions/Emotional = Psychological.
 
Messages
78
I laughed to myself when one of the doctors I saw said, "Fibromyalgia, it's a real disease, you know" without any prompting at all. Maybe he has to remind himself every once in awhile!
 
Messages
78
I should add, I don't have fibro, and this was the same guy who said I couldn't have CFS because I didn't have a sore throat. whatever.
 

JT1024

Senior Member
Messages
582
Location
Massachusetts
I was following a discussion on Medscape between two physicians discussing whether Fibro was "real". One of the doctors was a physician I actually went to where I worked at the time (Lahey Clinic in MA) since I had pain and no diagnosis. He was/is a Rheumatologist who IMHO was an idiot. So now he is moderating a Medscape discussion on FM?? Ridiculous.

I entered the discussion that seemed to be mostly among physicians with strong disbelief and found there were a number of other healthcare workers (nurses) and me, who had enjoyed exceptionally active lifestyles before an FM diagnosis. Since getting pissed off at ignorant physicians didn't help me, I decided to let the whole discussion go.

After having FM for a number of years, I was also diagnosed with CFS 8 years ago.

Wouldn't you just love to let these idiots live your life for a few years?
 

barbc56

Senior Member
Messages
3,657
Fibromyalgia has now been recognized by the American College of Rheumatology.

I changed doctors when my previous doctor moved and I asked for a doctor who knows about FM. She has over 500 patients with FM and did refer me to a doctor who is knowledgeable. She was saying that so much information has come out over the last five years that a lot of doctors know it's not mental. Especially, the younger doctors.

I would think this would differ depending on the doctor. Fortunately I get my medical care at a hospital that is highly thought of around the country. Especially the fact that these doctors are required to get continual training above the amount usually required to be a doctor. I've only had one doctor years ago who told me I probably had a personality disorder. My psychiatrist complained to the other doctor. However I have some horror stories from doctors way back before I even got this DD.

Like someone reported above I just say that I have FM. CFS/ME is another story.

An interesting aside that some of you may know about is on the TV program House, in one episode, while brainstorming possible diagnosis, one doctor mentioned FM. Another said it was an "iffy" diagnosis. The other doctor said no and talked about how it's now recognized by the ACR.

I wish I knew which episode as I would have liked to write a letter commending the mention of FM.

However, I don't see a rheumatologist, I see a neurologist.
Barb C.:>)
 

taniaaust1

Senior Member
Messages
13,054
Location
Sth Australia
An interesting aside that some of you may know about is on the TV program House, in one episode, while brainstorming possible diagnosis, one doctor mentioned FM. Another said it was an "iffy" diagnosis. The other doctor said no and talked about how it's now recognized by the ACR.

I wish I knew which episode as I would have liked to write a letter commending the mention of FM.

Barb C.:>)

Glad to hear that the show House has FM right. I put in a complaint to that show one time as they had an eposide in which CFS came up.. and House made some very horrible comments about this illness which werent corrected.
 

barbc56

Senior Member
Messages
3,657
I think I remember that episode. Wasn't it the one where House gives the guy candy,telling him they're pills and then a week later the patient comes back for more pills as they helped his energy.:mad:

At least that episode was before the one that mentions fibromyalgia.

I was going to write a letter, don't remember why but I didn't get to it. You are to be commended for doing that!!!:thumbsup:


Barb C:>)
 

PhoenixDown

Senior Member
Messages
454
Location
UK
As for the label, I don' t think it's unanimously seen as more real than CFS. In terms of the general public it just depends on who you ask, in terms of medical practitioners both labels seem on par in terms of how they are seen as psychiatric, behavioural, and "unreal" suffering.
 

barbc56

Senior Member
Messages
3,657
As for the label, I don' t think it's unanimously seen as more real than CFS. In terms of the general public it just depends on who you ask, in terms of medical practitioners both labels seem on par in terms of how they are seen as psychiatric, behavioural, and "unreal" suffering.

It is in the States which I think is a real tragedy that me/cfs isn't. However it also depends on where you live, medical access/physician you have as well as the diagnosis you have.

Barb C.:>)